Meet the Zionsville Town Council Dist. 2 candidates

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Compiled by Ann Marie Shambaugh

The two candidates running for Zionsville Town Council Dist. 2 began their lives a world away – literally – as Brett Ashton was born in Australia and Kevin Spees is a lifelong Zionsville resident. But both men have raised their families in Zionsville and want to see responsible growth in the future.

CIZ-COM-0421-District 2 -Ashton

Name: Brett Ashton

Age: 43

How many years have you lived in Zionsville? 12

How did you and your family end up in Zionsville? While I was born and raised in Australia, I attended both undergraduate school and law school in central Indiana, and have lived in and around Indianapolis for approximately 25 years with the exception of a two year stint in Evansville. We moved to Zionsville in 2003.

Why do you want to run for elected office?

I decided to file for office because I wanted to continue to see the town focus on responsible growth.

What is your previous political experience?

Most of my professional career has been spent representing clients before legislative and regulatory bodies both in Indiana and all over the United States. While I have never run for office, I’ve seen the good that can be done in politics by those who want to help people.

What are your top priorities if elected? Managing our continued growth with preservation of Zionsville’s unique charm. We have a great town, but we can continue to make it even better with targeted economic development that will in turn fund improvements in infrastructure.

What is your favorite thing about Zionsville? Walking down Main Street in the summertime.

What area do you think is Zionsville’s greatest need for improvement? We have a great town, but I think we need to continue to improve our infrastructure to handle the added growth we have seen in the last several years.  While we will inevitably have growth, I want to ensure we manage that growth responsibly.

Favorite local restaurant: The Friendly

Favorite movie: Airplane

Family: I have soon to be 15-year-old triplets – David, Christian and Addie.

Pets: Jack Ashton – our 10 year old yellow lab.

Favorite vacation: Frasier Island

Something you’d like readers to know about you: I walked off a plane some 20 plus years ago from Australia with enough money for a year of college and a dream of building a life in the US and have been very fortunate to have been given the opportunity to build a successful career and raise a family in Zionsville.

Something most people don’t know about you: I used to play high level competitive squash as a kid growing up in Australia.

 

CIZ-COM-0421-District 2 - Spees

Name: Dr Kevin Spees

Age: 54

How many years have you lived in Zionsville?  54

How did you and your family end up in Zionsville?

My Dad’s family moved here in 1932 and my mother’s family in about 1939.  They are both Zionsville graduates as am I and my four older brothers.

Why do you want to run for elected office?

I always knew I would step up when the time was right for my family.  My dad was an Eagle Township Trustee so I was raised watching my parents give back to the community.

What is your previous political experience? Have you run for or held an elected office before?

None and no

What are your top priorities if elected?

I want to keep Zionsville moving forward in a way that preserves our charm but positions us to keep Zionsville fiscally sound.  A big priority of mine is keeping the school system exceptional.  That tradition of excellence helps everyone in Zionsville from business to homeowners and I look forward to that partnership.

What are your qualifications to run for this office?

I’ve been in private practice for 26 years so I know how to keep a business strong.  You have to be respectful of the opinions and needs of those you serve and be ready to adapt your plan when necessary.

What is your favorite thing about Zionsville?

Even though Zionsville has grown substantially in my life, it still has a small town feel.

What area do you think is Zionsville’s greatest need for improvement?

We need to attract more business that will contribute to our tax base.

Favorite local restaurant:

It’s hard to go wrong in Zionsville.  My wife is a really great cook so my favorite meals are at home.

Favorite movie:

Jeremiah Johnson

Favorite quote or motto:

Lead, follow or get out of the way!

Family:

Married to Shelley for 20 years.  I have two kids, Megan and Connor.

Pets:

A yellow Lab named Jinx and a black Lab named Ace.

Favorite vacation:

Sail trip in the British Virgin Islands.

Something you’d like readers to know about you:

You will always know where you stand with me.  I like to be straightforward.

Something most people don’t know about you: 

When I was in high school, I did my dad’s lab work.  He was also a dentist. I worked side by side with my dad in our dental practice for five years before his retirement.  It was the greatest gift he could have given me.


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