Sussex candidates talk attracting businesses

SUSSEX – Candidates running for the Sussex Village Board have differing opinions on how to best attract new business to the village.

Incumbents Scott Adkins, Wendy Stallings and Bob Zarzynski are on the April 3 ballot, along with newcomer Daniel Schindler. Three seats are open; each winner will serve a three-year term. 

Now News Group sent each a questionnaire about his or her candidacy. Adkins chose not to participate in this story.

Candidates’ answers were limited to 50 words. In some cases, they were edited for length.

What is the most important issue facing Sussex, and how do you plan to address it?

Schindler:  The most important issue facing Sussex is bringing in businesses to Sussex, subsequently bringing more money into the village, enabling the citizens of Sussex to stay in Sussex and spend their hard-earned money here, as opposed to spending it in nearby cities like Brookfield and Pewaukee.

Stallings: Maintaining the environment of inclusion and hometown/small-town feel while encouraging business growth and development, especially in the downtown core of the village, and supporting the businesses already present in the village.

Zarzynski: With the current growth rate the village has, the challenge is how do we address this and still keep our taxes palatable for the residents and continue to keep our small-town atmosphere. I believe our “pay as you go” mindset will keep the debt loads low and will take us well into the future.

What previous experience (life, government or work) makes you most qualified to serve as a village trustee?

Schindler: My experience in politics, I worked on the 2016 state and presidential campaign and have also worked with a political lobbyist. In addition, I will take the skills I have learned from being the vice president of student government at UW-Waukesha and apply them to the role of village trustee. 

Stallings: First, I love the village and am committed to its success. I earned a degree in community leadership and development, conferred with honors from Alverno College. The dominant focus of that degree is in building community — socially and economically, through strategic projects.

Zarzynski: With my 26-plus years as a village resident and my work in the business finance arena, I understand the concerns of the residents as well as the business owners. I continue to strive to incorporate these experiences into my duties as a village trustee and to provide the best-in-class service to both.

Amazon has proposed building a package sorting facility in the village. What can leaders in Sussex do to continue attracting business to the village?

Schindler: The proposed Amazon facility will be a fantastic addition to Sussex, but now is the opportunity to capitalize and bring in more businesses. Village leaders should start reaching out to businesses in the service industry, as that is what is really missing; bringing more services to Sussex will bring other industries as well.  

Stallings: Kudos belong to Jeremy Smith, village administrator, and village staff for the Amazon proposal. When we receive proposals from businesses that make great community partners, employ residents and add to economic growth, it is my responsibility to promote the opportunity, address concerns and questions and ultimately vote “aye” in favor. 

Zarzynski: We can continue to attract businesses by constantly exploring avenues that will assist the business owners and create a desire for them to want to be part of our wonderful community. This can be augmented by our residential growth and the related ability to provide qualified individuals to the available workforce for their utilization.

Daniel T. Schindler

AGE: 19

OCCUPATION: Student (University of Wisconsin-Waukesha)


COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: Heavily involved in the UW system merger

CONTACT: [email protected], 727-331-7418

Wendy Stallings (inc.)

AGE: 41

OCCUPATION: Client support manager with a telecommunications company


COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: Volunteer for various village events, company committee for employee civic engagement

CONTACT: [email protected], 262-212-2162

Bob Zarzynski (inc.)

AGE: 61

OCCUPATION: Vice president of business services for Summit Credit Union

PREVIOUS ELECTED OFFICES: Trustee for the village of Sussex since 2011

COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: Various chambers and nonprofits throughout the Metro Milwaukee area.

Contact: [email protected]


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