With the sitting Lincolnwood, Illinois, Mayor Barry Bass not seeking office in the upcoming general election, that has opened the door for other candidates to take the helm, including Trustee Jesal B. Patel.
Patel, along with fellow Trustee Georjean Hlepas Nickell, are both hoping to become mayor of the Cook County village.
Patel has lived in Lincolnwood since he was just 4 years old. The Indian American realtor resides at the same address today as when he moved here nearly 40 years ago, according to his bio.
Patel attended the district 74 schools and grew up working as a caddy at the Bryn Mawr Country Club. He attended Loyola Academy for high school and is a graduate of Indiana University’s business school with a bachelor of science degree in finance-real estate. He has been with his wife Kate for over 25 years and has three young children, his bio adds.
Patel’s business, Patel Realty, is located in Lincolnwood and specializes in residential and retail real estate sales and investment. He has been a trustee in Lincolnwood since 2007 and has served as board liaison to multiple village committees and boards while also serving as chairman of the finance committee and the committee on ordinances, rules, and buildings.
Patel also has been selected to serve as a volunteer advocate for the shopping center and hotel industries. In his role he visits Springfield and Washington several times per year to meet with state and federal legislators to provide local perspective to the lawmaking process.
His vast experience and knowledge along with his obvious passion and ability make him an excellent member of local government, it says.
Patel said in a Chicago Tribune interview that he is qualified for the role because he has “more than 25 years of local business experience as a real estate developer and broker, a manufacturer, a retailer, a hotelier, an employer, and of course as a taxpayer. Virtually all of my business experience includes working with local government in a variety of ways. That business experience combined with my service as a trustee and 15 combined years of advocacy on the state and federal levels for AAHOA (Asian American Hotel Owner’s Association) and ICSC (International Council of Shopping Centers) makes me the best candidate to lead Lincolnwood into the future.”
He added that he has demonstrated his leadership skills throughout his tenure as a trustee and has a proven ability to solve problems and build consensus, according to the Tribune report.
When asked about the most important issues the village is facing, Patel noted COVID-19, as well as sales taxes.
“Lincolnwood has a heavy dependence on sales taxes and therefore we must be mindful of the pressures on our local sales tax producers,” he said. “We must enact and support policy to diversify our tax base and fill vacant and underutilized commercial properties.”
The election for Lincolnwood is set for April 6.