Harrisburg mayor Dale Fowler is announcing at 10 this morning that he is running for the state Senate in 2016.
The senate run is something Fowler, a Republican who was first elected as mayor in April, has considered for the past few months. Reports in July indicated that Fowler may seek his party"s nomination for the state Senate from the 59th District. The 59th is currently held by state Sen. Gary Forby, D-Benton.
"The process is something that has been on his mind for some time," spokesman Travis Akin said. "It was something that he"s wanted to do. He took his time deciding and knows he"s ready."
In September, when Illinois state law first allowed, Fowler started circulating petitions for his run. The filing period ends between Nov. 23-30.
"He is seeking the Senate seat because like many others he is definitely frustrated and desires change," Akin said. "It is going to be a difficult task but he is not one to back down from a challenge."
Fowler has served on the Harrisburg City Council since 2013. He was first appointed to fill an open commissioner post and a year later appointed to finish out the term of Mayor Ron Crank, who died in office.
Along with serving on City Council, Fowler works as a business development officer with People"s Bank. He has served as president of the United Way of Southern Illinois. He later formed the Clothes for Kids Program in 2003, which became the Fowler-Bonan Foundation in 2011 and furnishes children in need across Southern Illinois with shoes and clothing.
Fowler is set to make his announcement at 10 a.m. at the Bonan Business Center, 540 N. Commercial St. in Harrisburg.
The 59th Senate District covers Franklin, Gallatin, Saline and Williamson counties, and runs from as far north as Hamilton County and south along the Illinois-Kentucky state line, including all of Alexander County.