Community activist Rudy Valdez has become the second candidate to announce his candidacy for Rockford mayor.
An engineer by trade in Rockford’s aerospace industry, Valdez is also well-known for his efforts volunteering for organizations in the Rockford region, including the business advocacy organization SWIFTT, as well as serving on committees and boards for the University of Illinois College of Medicine Dean’s Action Council, Rockford Public Schools, Alignment Rockford and the Boy Scouts.
In a news release, Valdez also cites many community service and leadership awards he’s received over the years.
He does not have any experience serving in elective office, but says he believes his other work in the community makes him highly qualified for the seat. “As Mayor, not only will I bring an extensive background in business development and demonstrated ability to bring distinct business units together to work as a team, I also understand the very real needs of Rockford,” Valdez in a statement. “Through my steady commitment to volunteering in our community, I have a strong understanding of the challenges and the unique and diverse attributes of Rockford that all contribute to our community’s quality of life.”
Valdez will run as an independent.
Valdez joins Sixth Ward Republican City Council member Pam Connell as the only two officially declared candidates for the seat. Among others also rumored to be considering running are Democratic Third Ward Alderman Tom McNamara and Republican State Senator Dave Syverson.
Incumbent Mayor Larry Morrissey, an independent, has not made any formal announcement about whether he will seek re-election.
Editor’s Note: This story was modified to clarify Valdez is running as an independent.