Submitted to the Herald Review

OSCEOLA COUNTY — Gladwin’s Mayor Tom Winarski has announced his candidacy for the 97th House of Representative's seat, currently held by Joel Johnson.

He has been mayor of the City of Gladwin for 14 years and was recently elected to an eighth term. He previously was a Gladwin City councilman for 20 years.

Winarski and his wife, Linda, have lived in Gladwin for the past 43 years. Winarski was raised in Clare County, graduating from Farwell Area High School. He attended Northwestern Michigan College, receiving an associate of science degree, then attended Michigan State University, receiving a degree in industrial management. He spent the next three years in the U.S. Army after being commissioned a second lieutenant, serving as a student company commander and as a signal officer in Vietnam, receiving a Bronze Star.

His career in banking began at Detroit Bank and Trust and continued at Mid Michigan Bank/First of America in Gladwin. He retired from JP Morgan Chase in 2007, where he worked as a commercial lender and enjoyed working with small businesses.

Winarski received an master's of finance degree from Central Michigan University and has served on numerous boards and commissions, notably the Workforce Development Board Region 7B and MTEC at Mid-Michigan Community College. He has developed a well-rounded understanding of municipal finance, workforce training issues and the problems faced by Northern Michigan small businesses. He has grown the City of Gladwin’s general fund reserve from $400,000 to more than $1 million dollars in the past 10 years.

Winarski’s experience and knowledge in dealing with the problems of a city in Northern Michigan will give him an opportunity to deal with those problems on a State of Michigan level. His main concerns are with the structural budget problems at the State of Michigan that affect county, township and city finances. He also is concerned with both the working poor and the unemployed. He has owned his own small business for the past 14 years.