Lisa Stone is a human rights activist based in Buffalo Grove, Illinois. She’s known in her community for many things: her insistence on standing up for the people; her work in uncovering corrupt practices surrounding The Clean Water Act and “safe” drinking water in the area; and her status as the first elected official in Illinois to ever be recalled, which is no coincidence. The more that government officials attempted to silence her, the more determined Lisa became to share the truth with everyone around her. That’s why she has created this blog.
Back in the early 1990s, Lisa became interested in politics. At that time Lisa had neighbors who were not responsible dog owners. As a result, Lisa decided to become involved in passing legislation related to fatal dog attacks. She spearheaded a crusade to pass breed specific legislation for dog breeds that have reputations for being dangerous. This initial foray into politics helped Lisa realize that she could have a positive impact on the world, and she resolved (I became the natural “go to” for citizens looking for help on myriad of issues) to speak out on other issues that she cared about.
In 2009 Lake County Committeeman, now Treasurer, asked me to run for Trustee of Buffalo Grove. Lisa Stone was elected to the Buffalo Grove Board of Trustees.
While serving as a Trustee, a community member made her aware of noxious fumes that emanated near his business. A local doctor confirmed that his staff had been going home sick from those fumes and he had concerns for his patients with respiratory issues. In 2011 I co-founded the Lake County Vernon Township Coalition for Safe Drinking Water and The Clean Water Act. As a result of this public safety issue, Lisa decided to create the Lake County-Vernon Township Coalition for Safe Drinking Water with other activists. The group’s goal is to ensure the safety of safe water for residents to drink in the Lake County-Vernon Township area and to protect the bodies of water protected by the Clean Water Act.
While participating as a member of the coalition, Lisa Stone worked diligently to uncover information about the safety of the water. She quickly realized that not everyone took the same approach to their work. In fact, many government officials — a number of whom were in the pockets of businessmen — actively tried to block the reality of the township’s water situation. Studies about water safety were purged or hidden; grant money disappeared creating the facade of a Brownfield property, suggesting a clean property when in reality “cleaning efforts” never happened; bodies of water were redrawn or falsely labelled on maps to mask changes.
As Lisa learned more about the issue, she alerted the public to her findings in order to spread awareness. By giving the public the information they needed to understand the issue, Lisa hoped that the public would contact their representatives and demand a solution. At the same time, she came under fire from the local government, who chose to try to silence her so that they could continue carrying out decisions that benefit only a few and harm the masses.
This corrupt network of politicians, and the businessmen who funded them, ultimately orchestrated Lisa’s recall from the Board, but they failed to shame her into oblivion. Instead, Lisa is just as publicly adamant today, if not more, about the importance of electing honest representatives who listen to their constituents. Representatives with integrity are not afraid to tackle serious issues so that they can protect the communities they serve.
Lisa Stone believes that connecting with other community members who care about the same issues as you is the first step to achieving change in society.
She also recommends speaking out publicly to spread awareness and get others involved. Making a difference in society is rarely easy; however, Lisa’s commitment to helping others keeps her engaged, hopeful, and enthusiastic about her work.
There are numerous other issues that Lisa cares about besides safe drinking water. For example, Lisa was the first elected official to call out high schools and government for hiding the rising heroin epidemic. She also cares very deeply about women’s rights and mental health initiatives. Outside of work she enjoys spending time with her family, cooking, video editing and exercise.
Arizona State University
Oakton Community College
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