Heuer: Collins 'understands government must be efficient, effective'
Niagara County Republican Chairman James Heuer announced Friday William J. "Will" Collins Sr. has been selected as the Republican candidate for Niagara County legislator in the 12th District.
Currently, Niagara County Majority Leader Richard E. Updegrove represents this district. Updegrove, in his 12th year of service, announced earlier this week he would not seek re-election.
"Will Collins is the perfect citizen to succeed Majority Leader Updegrove in the County Legislature," Heuer said. "He's smart, comes with a strong business and accounting background, and understands that county government must be operated in an efficient and effective manner."
In accepting the designation, Collins said, "I am honored to be selected as the Republican candidate for Niagara County legislator and I look forward to running an issues-based campaign advocating the need for lower taxes, right-sized government and fighting for the interests of the Town and City of Lockport at the county level. I pledge to work very hard during the campaign and, if elected, carry on the strong representation that Majority Leader Updegrove gave unselfishly to the residents of the 12th District and Niagara County."
Collins, the son of former Niagara County Legislator John F. Collins, added, "My parents have instilled in me from the beginning the need to always give back to one's community, and have provided outstanding examples of how to be a strong community leader. I take their example seriously and will work tirelessly to serve Lockport as my family has for generations."
Collins has extensive experience in the private sector, being self-employed with two businesses, Collins Accounting and Collins Construction, for many years. A graduate of Niagara University and Niagara County Community College with a bachelor's degree in business, Collins is active in numerous community organizations and boards, including volunteer soccer, softball and karate, the Niagara USA Chamber of Commerce, Town of Lockport Zoning Board of Appeals, Rapids Rod and Gun Club and Independent Association of Accountants.
Collins has been active with karate and martial arts. He is a three-time U.S. Olympic Team member and coach for the U.S. Olympic Team, trained at Tokyo University, and taught karate throughout the U.S. and Canada and at Seishin-Kan Karate School for more than 25 years.
Collins lives on Beattie Avenue in Lockport and is married to his wife, Lindsay.