EUREKA — A 27-year veteran Illinois State Police officer and retired chief of police of the Illinois Commerce Commission Police Department has announced his candidacy for sheriff of Woodford County.
Craig Baner of Congerville is the second candidate to formally declare. Matthew Smith, an operations captain in the Woodford County Sheriff’s Department, announced his intention to run for the office last month. Current Sheriff Jim Pierceall will retire when his term ends on Nov. 30, 2014.
Baner retired in August of 2013. He is a Woodford County native who attended Eureka High School, Illinois State University, the Illinois Police Academy and the FBI National Law Enforcement Academy.
In a statement, Baner cited his law enforcement experience in seeking the office, saying he was looking forward to “using my administrative leadership, knowledge and experience to serve the people of Woodford County.” He said his years heading up the ICC agency have made him an “effective and efficient leader in dealing with public safety and budget issues as well as union contract negotiations while staying within governmental financial restraints.”
In running for the sheriff’s office, he added that his main goals are for all citizens to “enjoy the highest level of quality of life” and to make sure “that nothing and no one threaten that quality of life.”