No re-election, says Cary's Kierna

CARY – In May, the village will have a new leader.

Village President Tom Kierna has decided not to run for re-election, contrary to previous statements.

Kierna said he got an election packet to collect signatures for the April 9 election, but has opportunities to expand his responsibilities as an executive sales representative with his full-time employer, Exide Technologies.

“My intentions were to run, but a lot of things happened,” Kierna said. “I had to make a tough decision.

“In the last year, there’s been a lot of opportunities to do more, expand horizons with Exide and grow the business. Growing the business will necessitate more traveling and doing more things than I’m doing today.”

Kierna said he believed he would not be able to devote enough time to being mayor – a job that requires about 20 hours a week from him. “My approach is whatever it takes,” he said.

Kierna has been involved in village government for almost 17 years, including nearly three years on the Zoning Board of Appeals, 10 years as a village trustee, and four years as mayor.

Kierna’s term ends May 7.

“I’m working hard right to the end,” Kierna said.

On the ballot for village president is Trustee Bruce Kaplan and former Trustee Mark Kownick.

Occasionally meetings have become heated between Kierna and trustees who took office in May 2011. But Kierna said his decision not to run has nothing to do with the personalities on the Village Board.

“I get along with everyone,” he said. “I can’t control what they think or feel ... I work with everyone. We’re as collaborative as they want to be. This had nothing to do with personalities. It’s all about where Tom Kierna is in his life at 55 years old and where he wants to go. It comes down to what’s best for me. ...

“I’ve served with other trustees where we haven’t agreed on things, but I hope those people feel that the decisions we made were in the best interest of Cary.”

If Kierna had run, he said he is confident he would have done well.

“I’ve had four elections and I’m 4-0,” Kierna said. “My passion is the village of Cary ... Who knows what would have happened. I would have given it my best shot.”

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