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March 15, 2016 — Illinois Primary Election
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Illinois State House of Representatives — Republican PartyCandidate for District 74

Photo of Daniel M. Swanson

Daniel M. Swanson

Republican
Lieutenant Colonel (US Army Retired)
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My Top 3 Priorities

  • Advocate for veterans, police and fire departments, medical professionals and first responders
  • Support a quality education for children (K-12), continue services to developmentally disabled, and protect the unborn
  • Reduce regulations and unfunded mandates on farmers, small businesses, schools and local governments

Experience

Experience

Profession:Lieutenant Colonel (US Army Retired)
Superintendent, Henry County Veterans Assistance Commission (2013–current)
Superintendent, Henry County Veterans Assistance Commission — Elected position (2013–current)
Adjutant and Commander, American Legion, Andover, IL Post #465 — Elected position (2000–current)
Executive Secretary Non-Profit 501 c.(3), Sundance for Our Soldiers, (SOS), equine therapy for soldiers, veterans and family members — Elected position (2014–current)
Lieutenant Colonel, United States Army, Army Sustainment Command, Rock Island Arsenal, Rock Island, Illinois (2010–2013)
Member and Mediator, Alpha Baptist Church, Alpha, Illinois — Elected position (2005–2012)
Vice President and Secretary, AlWood Board of Education — Elected position (1992–2010)
Lieutenant Colonel, United States Army, Multi-National Security Transition Command-Iraq; Baghadad, Iraq (2007–2008)
Contractor - LOGCAP III, United States Army, Army Sustainment Command, Rock Island Arsenal, Rock Island, IL (2002–2007)
Pvt-Lieutenant Colonel, Illinois Army National Guard and United States Army (1977–2001)

Education

United States Army, Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, IL Degree, Army Operations at DIV; CORP and Army (1999)
Unite States Army Field Artillery School, Fort Sill, OK Diploma, Combat Command Field Artillery Operations and Command Climate (1999)
Western IL University BS, Board of Governors Degree Program (1994)
United States Army, Combined Arms and Services Staff School, (CAS3) Fort Sheridan, IL Diploma, Combat Operations at Battalion, Brigade and Division (1992)
Black Hawk Junior College, East Campus, Kewanee, IL AA, General Studies (1986)

Community Activities

Volunteer Veteran Van Driver, Henry County Veterans Assistance Commission (2013–current)
Volunteer Veterans Service Officer (VSO), National Association of Veteran Service Officers, (NAVSO) (2014–current)
Volunteer, Henry County Economic Development (2014–2015)
Volunteer Coach, AlWood Baseball Asociation (1989–2006)
Volunteer, MS Football Coach, AlWood Board of Education (2003–2003)

Biography

 Lieutenant Colonel (retired) Daniel M. Swanson was born on July 30, 1959, in Woodhull, IL.  He graduated from AlWood Community Schools in May 1977 and Western Illinois University in August 1994 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree, Board of Governors.

            He enlisted in the Illinois Army National Guard on August 11, 1977 as a 63B Generator and Wheel Vehicle Mechanic.  He was selected on March 1, 1980 to serve on an active duty tour with the Illinois Army National Guard.  He attended Officer Candidate School at the Illinois Military Academy and commissioned a Second Lieutenant on June 14, 1986.  He served in many military duty positions, to include Petroleum Platoon Leader, Kewanee, IL; Commander, A Battery, 202d Air Defense Artillery Galesburg, IL and culminated as Commander, 2nd Battalion, 123rd Field Artillery, Milan, IL.   He retired January 31, 2001 after 20 years Active Duty and over 3 years as a Traditional Guardsman.

            After watching the soldiers he trained through his military career go to wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, he volunteered and was recalled to active duty on July 1, 2007, to serve with the Multi-National Security Transition Command – Iraq; Coalition Army Advisory Training Team, Baghdad, Iraq. He was assigned as Deputy Director, Iraqi Army Force Generation.   During his one-year tour, he coordinated and synchronized the recruiting, training, equipping and basing of Iraqi Army units with Coalition and Iraqi General Officer Leadership.  Dan assisted the Iraq Army and coalition advisors develop their first military defense budget @ $1.4B in-line with the Prime Ministers vision for Iraqi security.   LTC Swanson was tasked to mediate talks between Iraqi Army Leadership and Kurdish (Peshmerga) Army Leadership, which led the successful agreement whereas Kurdish (Peshmerga) Army soldiers and new recruits joining the Iraqi Army security forces. He completed his tour June 25, 2008 and returned to retirement July 14, 2008.  LTC Swanson earned the Bronze Star and Combat Action Badge.

            On April 3, 2010, Lieutenant Colonel Swanson was recalled to Active Duty to serve with the Army Sustainment Command, Rock Island Arsenal. He was assigned as Chief, Logistics Synchronization and Integration Cell for the Lead Materiel Integration Mission. He led a team of soldiers and civilians, which transitioned a mission from the Pentagon Army Staff to the Army Sustainment Command.  The mission was to re-design the method to equip Army units through a new automation tool, which resulted in retaining jobs at RIA, a taxpayer cost savings and higher Army Readiness standards.  He returned again to retirement on April 4, 2013.

            He currently serves as Superintendent, Henry County Veterans Assistance Commission providing financial aid and transportation services to Iowa City, Iowa Veterans Hospital for Henry County Veterans.  From December 1 2013, to November 30, 2014, 16 volunteer drivers drove over 47,000 miles, made 219 trips to Iowa City VA Center and transported 667 veterans for medical care.  He also provided financial assistance to veterans for paying utility, rent and food purchases.  He recently assisted an area WWII veteran to receive his High School Diploma 70 years after his regular graduating class.   He also conducted a Veterans Resource and Benefits Townhall with 26 exhibitors participating and over 100 veterans attended.  Dan is dedicated to serving veterans and serves on the Executive Board for the newly formed non-profit organization; Sundance for Our Soldiers (SOS).  The organization provides equine assisted services to veterans and dependents.

            Dan served for over 17 years on the AlWood (Alpha and Woodhull) Board of Education.  He continues to support the schools athletic, academic and other programs through his attendance or donations.  During his tenure, listened to his constituents and was re-elected for his efforts and concerns.   

            He served on the Henry County Board, serving on the safety committee and liquor license committee.  He refused pay and mileage for his public service.  Dan was required to resign from the County Board when re-called back to Active Duty.

            Dan is still actively engage with the 5th generation Swanson family farming operation with his dad, Ron; brother, Steve; son Matthew and nephew Josh near Andover, Illinois.  They raise corn, beans, oats, wheat and hay crops and a cow/calf operation, cattle feedlot and swine. 

            On September 25, 2015, Dan was the first candidate to announce his candidacy for Illinois State Representative, 74th District.  Through his 27 years of military service, Dan has sworn to “uphold and defend the Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic” and he takes this oath with seriousness and conviction.  Dan is an advocate for veterans and soldiers serving today.  He is frustrated with the “system” when veterans visit his office not knowing their earned health benefits or other services available to them.  As the Army and National Guard begin force redesign, Dan stresses the importance of maintaining a National Guard presence within the State and local communities. 

            As Dan says, “he has already completed his career as a soldier and is not looking to add an additional career to his resume`”.  He supports term limits and will not accept an Illinois pension or Illinois health care.  His priorities include:  engage other state agencies to educate veterans on benefits awareness; quality education for school aged children (K-12), continued services to/for developmentally disabled; reduce regulations for farmers and small business owners; cut spending to balance the budget; protect the unborn and bring employers and job opportunities back to Illinois. 

            Lieutenant Colonel (retired) Swanson is married to the former Tammy Snider of Kewanee. They have two children, Mark - employed with Syngenta, Cedar Rapids, Iowa and Matthew – employed on Swanson Farms and lives near Andover, Illinois.  Dan and Tammy (Snider) live near Alpha and attend Alpha Baptist Church in Alpha, Illinois.

 

Political Beliefs

Political Philosophy

I do not seek a career in politics. My over 27 years in the Army was my career. I believe our Founding Fathers intended service in an elected position we serve as a “Citizen Legislature” or public servant. I view this as an opportunity to serve my State and return back to my community proudly walking shoulder-to-shoulder with those whom I served. Just as Farmers laid down their pitchfork to fight in the Revolutionary War to build this Country, I will lay down my pitchfork to fight for you as your State Representative. And like those great men and women who fought to build this Country served as “Citizen Legislators”, I will do the same. With my pledge to support term limits, I will limit my time in office knowing I made a difference putting Illinois back on the right track. With the problems facing Illinois, I will reject the pension and health care plans offered to Springfield Legislators.

      How can we better serve our heroes? My vision is that we engage the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs and other appropriate State Agencies to participate in a collaborative effort to educate our Illinois Veterans. For example, when visiting Secretary of State driver’s license facilities and/or assisted living homes, veteran information should be available. Our WWII heroes returned from war, got off the train and went back to the farm; Korean War heroes returned from war and went back to the factory; Vietnam War heroes returned from war they immediately put on civilian clothes in an attempt to blend-in. Each time I separated from the Army I was required to attend classes on VA healthcare and education benefits.   Recently, I had a Korean War Veteran with two Purple Hearts come into my office seeking assistance. After visiting with this hero, I learned he wasn’t enrolled in the VA healthcare system-a simple automation task to me. One phone call, one fax and 30 minutes later, the veteran was enrolled in VA Healthcare.  

      I support providing a quality education for all children (K-12). I will not support mandates resulting in increased costs to our schools and local taxpayers.  Serving on a board of education 17 years taught me many things, one of which was that the often-directed mandates from our State legislators in Springfield are very seldom accompanied with funding. More often than not, this extra burden of new requirements cause additional financial strain for the district. Often time districts are forced to pay for these mandates with education funds that could have been better used on curriculum. We don’t need to dictate from Springfield what in our perception “needs to be taught”. Let the Educators; Educate and Legislators; Legislate.  Don’t Legislate Education! I do not support Common Core. Children, who excel, should be given the opportunity to achieve at higher levels.

      I will protect the unborn. Faces and Spaces! I believe every baby has a face and there are wedded couples who have a space in their heart willing to adopt the face. We need to continue to fund our state agencies and work with private groups who help assist in the adoption process and not build barriers. I believe in defending life from conception to natural death. I am deeply protective of the sanctity of life from the unborn to our frail elderly. I support continuing services to Developmentally Disabled citizens. I am committed to promote the integration and inclusion of people with developmental disabilities into their local communities. I will ensure individuals with developmental disabilities receive the support and services they need in order to lead fulfilling and productive lives, while remaining close with family members. I will work hard to increase the availability, accessibility and/or quality of life and public services for our developmentally disabled citizens.

The 74th District includes 3 National Guard Armories and 5 National Guard Units; 3 Illinois State Police Districts; 5 Sheriff Departments and many local police departments, fire departments, First Responders and rescue groups. I will continue retiring State Representative Moffitt’s commitment to you. As a Citizen Soldier with the Illinois Army National Guard, I understand the sacrifices and selfless service required to maintain high standards, proficiencies and loyalty to those you serve, protect and care.  As a soldier who served in Iraq and saw evil, we need our men and women trained and equipped to handle disasters and situations that require Force Protection resources and immediate medical care. Additionally, the National Guard facilities and personnel contribute financially to our communities and provide opportunities to our young men and women within our communities.

I will not support legislation that increases additional burdens on our small businesses, farmers and schools. I will fight to reduce regulations that impact business growth and bottom line. Small business and farms are the major employer’s within the 74th District and throughout Illinois. Yet, our legislators continue to negatively impact, through regulations and taxes, the opportunity to expand. Business owners and farmers are good stewards of their environment, soil and business practices. Illinois continues to lose jobs to neighboring states causing economical strain on communities and Illinois. According to an Illinois Review, article Tuesday, October 20, 2015 titled REPORT SHOWS ILLINOIS LOST THOUSANDS OF JOBS IN SEPTEMBER: "Illinois’ sluggish economy has greatly affected the state budget. As state-to-state migration data from the IRS shows, taxpayers are moving out of Illinois and taxable income is being lost to other states. In 2013, Illinois lost 81,000 residents and $4.1 billion in taxable income to other states. Illinois lost 1,800 manufacturing jobs in September and has lost 12,500 manufacturing jobs in 2015 alone while every neighboring Midwest state has added manufacturing jobs during the same timeline". We need to establish an environment that encourages job growth, increase opportunities and bring businesses back to Illinois. Raising taxes will not fix this problem. We must once again be a leader in manufacturing jobs.

Additional items I support include the Independent Map Amendment (Fair and Equitable) and Our right to bear Arms.

 

Position Papers

Daniel M. Swanson White Paper

Summary

This paper provides short comments of who I am and provides the reader a quick synopsis about me.  Not a long position paper, but a too the point paper about Daniel M. Swanson.

Republican Candidate for State Representative, 74th District.   Served community for 17 years on AlWood Board of Education and served my Country for 27 years in the U.S. Army.  Now to serve my State as State Legislator.

Decorated Operation Iraqi Freedom Veteran  (Jul 07 – Jul 08) earing a Bronze Star and Combat Action Badge.  I was recalled from retirement and served as an Individual Mobilization Augmentee, which meant I did not rotate in with a unit, rather I reported as an individual soldier.

Served Western Illinois in the Illinois Army National Guard over 23 years enlisting in August 1977.

Selected to serve in a new program where National Guard soldiers were places on active duty tours to augment the Illinois Army National Guard full-time manning.  Served 20 years.

Husband to Tammy (Snider) married 30 April 1983.  Father of two adult sons, Mark born 9 February 1984 and Matthew born 14 November 1988.

Strong family principles.  My family is the next important part of my well-being; only second to Jesus, my Savior.

5th Generation Swanson family farm.  My Dad, Brother, Son, Nephew and I farm.  We grow row crops and livestock.  Crops include corn, soybeans, hay and oats.  Livestock include stock cowherd, fat cattle feed lots and swine operation.  

Member of Alpha Baptist Church, Alpha, Illinois.  A Small Church with a Big Heart!

Conservative constitutional values guided by my commitment and service to Country.

Support Right to bear Arms.  Our Fore Fathers laid forth in our Constitution those rights guaranteed through their struggles in making this a Free Country.  Those rights are non-negotiable.

Common Sense Approach to problem solving.  Solving problems through life’s experiences and experiences of those around me, help me see solutions with an understanding of right from wrong.

Believes politics is a public service not a profession.  As President Lincoln said in the Gettysburg Address; “and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”  

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