Block endorses Saline's candidacy in the 74th District
Today, (Tues., Nov. 24) John Block formally endorsed current Knox County Republican Chairman Wayne Saline, for the Republican nomination in the Illinois House 74th District race. Block was a board member of the Illinois Farm Bureau, and served as the Secretary of Agriculture in Illinois, before being appointed the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture under President Reagan. Presently, Block owns and enjoys his family farm located in Knoxville, Illinois.
“I have known Wayne’s family for more than 50 years," Block said. "They have always served as unselfish community leaders.”
Block also addressed the time Saline served on the Knox County Board, saying that it was “a very valuable qualification given the desperate financial trouble our state is experiencing.”
For three generations the Saline family has been farming just outside of Rio, Ill. Wayne Saline's grandfather, Carl, and his sons, Jack and Sterling, started Saline Farms Inc. in the 1950's. As they expanded over the next quarter century, they began raising hogs and cattle to their grain farm. Today, Saline Farms covers 2,300 acres, where Wayne Saline oversees day-to-day operations of the farm. In 1990, Wayne and his wife, Barbara, joined with others in the family to start APEX Pork. It is a farrow-to-finish facility in Knox County.
Saline served for eleven years on the Knox County Board and was Chairman of the Finance Committee for eight of those years. During his time as Finance chairman, Knox County stopped borrowing money and had balanced budgets. Saline was also chief negotiator for the county and was able to negotiate contracts that protected jobs, while being fiscally responsible.
Saline is one of three Republicans who have filed to run for the party's nomination. Dan Swanson of Alpha and Mike DeSutter of Woodhull, the operator of another large family farm, are also in the race. Galesburg attorney Bill Butts has announced he will run for the office as a Democrat.