[First printed in the Party Matters email newsletter] The Elkhart County Republican Party wants you to know your candidates. Throughout the run toward the May Primary Election, we will be posting Q&As with your candidates to help introduce (and re-introduce) them to you – the Republican voter! All Republican candidates in the race are contacted. We begin this series with the contested race for Elkhart County Commissioner in District 3.

Suzanne Weirick
1: Candidate bio:
Undergraduate: Purdue University, BA English
Graduate: Illinois State University, MBA
Married to Dr. Troy Weirick. Mother of two amazing young adults: Marty & T.J.
County as Commissioner of District 3 since 2017. Active member of many boards and executive boards including:

Current Professional service:

• Indiana County Commissioners, current Secretary, past Treasurer, past Northeast District Vice President.
• South Bend Elkhart Regional Partnership, current Executive Board
• Elkhart Economic Development Corporations, current Executive Board
• Michiana Area Council on Governance, Past President
• Elkhart Emergency Management Advisory Board, President
• South Bend Elkhart Ivy Tech Board of Trustees
• Vibrant Communities Co-chairperson

Many years of service in and on committees that include volleyball coach, track coach, conditioning coach, school and sports team parent boards, fundraising for local organizations to include Startup Moxie and Boys & Girls Clubs as well as many others.

2. Why did you decide to seek election/re-election?

I am choosing to run for re-election today for the same reason I ran for office the first time. I love Elkhart County. We have the best farms, hardest workers, and most giving people and yet we have room to grow.

As an outsider, I have seen what great communities can look like and we are making progress every day to get there. I want to continue to be part of the solution and suggest policy and projects that help us grow responsibly and safely – all in the name of making certain my children – our children – and our children’s children, have a place they WANT to come home to every day as an adult.

This takes dedication and willingness to collaborate. This takes a vision for our future that includes housing for all and park spaces that are up to date and welcoming. This vision also needs to include more varieties of work options in our service industries, for instance restaurants and social gathering choices, but more importantly needs to include trained worker options for today’s automation.

3. What do you feel are the main issues facing the County and how will you tackle them as Commissioner?

A commissioner is responsible for infrastructure and economic development. Today’s challenges need someone with an ability to address these issues and move Elkhart County forward.

Like most places in the U.S., Elkhart County is struggling with today’s inflation impacting our residents, businesses and government services. It spares no one.

Inflation hits our residents everywhere. Addressing opportunities for workforce development and growth will continue to be key to compensate for the higher costs we feel at the grocery store and everywhere else.

Supporting business recruitment efforts and looking to create new opportunities through solid infrastructure, broadband access, and a trained workforce will be impactful to business recruitment and retention. While being mindful of the increasing costs for infrastructure maintenance and development will be a challenge for the County, as we will need to continue to manage more infrastructure with less financial resources.

Along the same lines, it will be imperative to secure additional resources to further our existing dollars and improve our infrastructure to attract talent to our great County. Leveraging all financial resources available (or all the “tools in the toolbox” as the State Legislature is keen on saying) is the best way to keep our development improving.

Another issue of major concern is the lack of housing. We will need to support new developments and take advantage of the new residential TIF to impact all levels of local housing for our population growth goals.

Lastly, we will have to address mental health issues. Again, a widespread problem of our state and nation, mental health issues continue to plague our workforce and be disruptive. The best way to tackle this is by continuing partnerships with many agencies and leveraging funds available outside of normal county dollars. Our government should not provide the treatment, just the connection of those who can and increase opportunities for access whenever possible.

4. Why have you decided to seek election as a Republican candidate?

I believe in fiscal responsibility and less government. Period. The more the government tries to control, the more it costs the tax payers and the less effective those services are at achieving results.

On the local level, as a conservative republican, I will continue to eliminate financial waste. During a time of increased inflation and uncertain employment opportunities following the republican party’s consistent platform of fiscal responsibility and less governance will be instrumental in saving our community.

As a Republican Commissioner, focusing on needed services, like road maintenance, safe infrastructure investment and economic development, is responsible governance.

5. How can voters get in touch with you and stay updated on your campaign?

I can be reached through Facebook: Weirick for County Commissioner or my website: Weirick for Commissioner.com The easiest and most direct, please feel free to call me at 859-492-5232.

 Steven R. Boussom
1: Candidate Bio
1984 Elkhart Memorial High School Graduate
1988 Accounting Major, Graduate of IUSB, BS in Business
1992 CPA Exam, 1994 CPA License
Lifelong resident of Elkhart County, married to Melissa for 31 years, and father to
3 adult children who are all college graduates and married.
Member of First Baptist Church of Elkhart for 30 years and currently serving as a
Deacon, Finance Committee Member and Life Group Leader.
Owner of my own CPA firm for over 21 years, working with 35 businesses and
the individuals behind those businesses as well as other independent clients.

2. Why did you decide to seek election/re-election?

I have been paying attention to politics my entire life. In October of 2023, I felt called to run for County Commissioner because I think a person can still make a difference on a local level.

I bring my skills as a CPA to the office and my experience leading people as a CFO and Controller will be valuable as I relate to the people who work in County government.

I will be counted on to follow the Constitution. Our founding documents and the Bill of Rights are the rule of law, and I will stand for our County if Federal or State government acts outside the bounds of the Constitution.

I seek individual freedoms. This is illustrated especially when it comes to allowing people to decide for themselves whether they are an essential worker or making their own decision to attend church in person.

I also support people if they want to wear a face mask and if they want to get a vaccine.I will support individual property rights and the ability to protect your property. I will be very careful when considering tax incremental financing. I will strive for common sense in matters of zoning and tax breaks.

As your County Commissioner, I will take seriously the legislative and executive functions of this office. I will seek to keep the local government accountable to the people. I will not make new laws just for the sake of law-making, but seek a better way to manage county government.

3. What do you feel are the main issues facing the County and how will you tackle them as Commissioner?

County roads and bridges need to be maintained at a high level. I will make sure we receive competitive bids during the process of getting those completed.

I want to make sure the people are represented by their elected officials, not unelected boards that operate out of the reach of voters.

I will be respectful of public comments and give a response if warranted.

4. Why have you decided to seek election as a Republican candidate?

My first vote at age 18 was for Reagan’s second term. I believe in limited government and low taxes.

I stand with the people of our county who appreciate hard work, individual liberty, and the privilege of living in a great area.

I have lived the American Dream and want to be an example to encourage and inspire people that it is still possible to prosper in this great country.

5. How can voters get in touch with you and stay updated on your campaign?

I may be reached through my website at steveboussom.com or please email me at [email protected] or my cell at 574-849-1760.