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Three things will last forever ...
faith, hope, love
... & the greatest of these is love.

My name is Lester Turilli. I'm an Independent candidate for Missouri governor in 2016. My heart is to serve. My experience is to lead. My passion is for people. Take a few moments to look through our website and thank you for joining us.

2016 Missouri Gubernatorial Candidate | Lester Turilli Jr

Lester Turilli Jr - Independent Candidate for Missouri Governor 2016

There is a fresh face with a new vision entering the 2016 gubernatorial race in Missouri. His name is Lester Turilli, Jr., and he is an Independent candidate. If you are looking for an authentic leader with a solid moral compass to lead this state, then consider casting your vote for Lester.

Turilli, 45, may be the only gubernatorial candidate who has surrounded himself with a prayer team which prays daily for revival in the state. His genuine love for the people of Missouri is second only to his love for God. He approaches the gubernatorial race with a commitment to positive campaigning, integrity, and social justice.

Lester grew up in Creve Coeur, Missouri. After graduating from Parkway North High School, he attended Baylor University, graduating with a BBA in Management and Entrepreneurship.

Currently, Turilli is an executive in his family business, Meramec Caverns and Caveman Zipline. His comprehensive understanding of business, public relations, marketing, the environment, and leadership in crisis situations have served him well as an executive and will do the same for his role in serving the people of Missouri. More than his business acumen, however, Turilli credits his relationship with God for motivating and enabling him to seek a political position. “Two years ago,” he says, “I fully surrendered my schedule, fears, career, and personal will to God.”

Read more . . .

2016 Missouri Gubernatorial Candidate | Lester Turilli Jr

Lester Turilli Jr - Independent Candidate for Missouri Governor 2016

Because I, Lester Turilli, Jr., and my supporters are people just like you, we can empathize with the struggles and concerns that you face on a daily basis. Unique to my campaign, I have positioned myself first as a listener, fully recognizing the time and commitment that listening carefully to Missouri voters will require. Hearing you and your ideas is essential to understanding needs, problems, and solutions. Shared views begin the process of helping, fixing, and progressing. Functional and lasting problem-solving comes only through deeper examination into the root of the issue. Creative solutions can be implemented once these areas are uncovered.

"Be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to anger" (James1:19).

"Intelligent people are always ready to learn. Their ears are open to knowledge" (Proverbs 18:15).

We believe less is more. Government doesn’t have to be bigger to be better. The majority of smaller businesses function more effectively and responsibly when they are held fiscally accountable. Part of the lost trust in government is due to negligent fund appropriations. Exercising frugality with the specified monies should be the expected norm. Our “Nickel Down” government spending method endorses a 5% reduction in State Budget expenditures over the course of four years.

The establishment of governmental power has been created by God and is under His sovereign control (Romans 13). We need to exercise responsible stewardship of the monies with which we have been entrusted.

My supporters and I do favor a minimum one year tax freeze on property tax, income tax, and certain sales tax. Of course, everyone would enjoy a tax reduction; however, such a move requires initial prudence. With distinctive actions toward decreasing government expenditures, this could happen. Once this move is realized in our "Nickel Down" approach (see Government above), we will have the opportunity to lower taxes.

It may surprise some that Jesus paid taxes in Matthew 17:24-27.

We stand with teachers in educational advances. Constrictive attitudes toward teacher performance will not improve learning systems and test scores. Educators should be given consistent expectations of teaching material and insight into assessment testing. We have creative classroom solutions (such as our "AMP"--Accelerated Mentoring Program) to help teachers and to increase student achievement. We stand behind local school districts responsibly determining the curriculum to be used to educate their students. We support religious freedom and liberty for administrators, teachers, and students. We believe the Bible and Christianity should be an integral part of curriculum development for its literary content, moral compass, and historical contribution to our nation and other world cultures.

"Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it" (Proverbs 22:6).

The breakdown of the American family, the chief problem of our country, is spiritual in nature and begins with the denial of God in the home. We encourage fathers to lead their families by example and in love. The self-worth and identity that shape children come from the family unit. Statistics show marriages which stay intact have fewer problems financially, physically, emotionally, and spiritually for both children and their parents. We understand the difficulties and challenges families face as we raise our own children in the present culture. We encourage the local church to help single parents with support. We sponsor a pre-marital counseling ("PMC") initiative for newlyweds. Simply, couples could waive an increased marriage license fee with completion of an eight-session course on marriage, covering topics such as intimacy, finances, communication, conflict resolution, distribution of household responsibilities, procreation and child-rearing techniques taught by a faith based establishment.

"Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord" (Ephesians 6:4).

As former foster parents, we have witnessed the successes and the disappointments of the Foster Care system in Missouri. The Children’s Division is understaffed and employees are overworked with large case volumes. These stressful situations continually lead to high staff turnover. The volunteer-based CASA along with the recent state contracting of independent agencies have helped with this burden. However, there is still much work to be done. We have creative ideas that we would like to implement with Missouri Social Services for foster children. Other challenges that need to be addressed include parenting resources, availability of drug treatment programs, psychiatric care of parents, modeling parent-child relationships and skills, and more homes for teenagers within the foster care system. We advocate more emphasis on Internal In-home Services (IIS) which focuses on preventing the out-of-home placement of children whenever possible through home-based emergency intervention and immediate and intensive family training. We want to increase the probability for nourishing fruitful and meaningful lives for our children in foster care. No child should be without a loving family.

"Children are a gift from the LORD; they are a reward from Him" (Psalm 127:3).

The rejection of God in the family, culture, government, education, and courts over past generations has led many Missouri families into destructive life styles. Now, an alarming number of Missouri’s citizens are immersed in drugs. Methamphetamine lab raids have garnered national attention, and our drug enforcement agents have faced increased danger to themselves, the residents of their communities, and property. Our law officers have done a great job of intervention in these hazardous situations, and we have seen a reduction in this threat. However, there is much more to be done. For instance, the incarceration of those who are involved in drug-related crimes needs to include drug rehabilitation. Likewise, we feel that more emphasis and support should be given to our Drug Court Programs which have had tremendous success in helping Missourians.

A more recently recognized problem our state faces is opium. Its use is growing dually through prescription drug abuse and in the ready availability of heroin. Missouri is one of the last states without a Prescription Drug Monitoring Program. PDMP’s can be exceedingly efficient tools utilized by government officials for reducing prescription drug abuse and diversion. We advocate a limited PDMP to target only narcotic drugs with a special emphasis on their administration by emergency rooms and clinics within a 5-day window. We are opposed to a state or national data collection (list) of private information.

Drug and alcohol abuse constitute the basis of nearly all crime. This chronic dilemma leaves our deputies and police personnel dealing with recurrent offenders and persistent crime. A lack of psychological counseling, along with drug rehab center unavailability, overcrowded prisons, and understaffing of drug personnel result in the drug cycle crime continuum. Creative steps must be taken in conjunction with faith-based institutions to eradicate this plague.

Prevention programs such as DARE serve as a starting point for educating our children. However, follow-up deterrence courses need to involve mentors, older students, and former offenders. Success will require long-term interaction with students over the path of several grade levels. Allowing children to see the benefits of being productive citizens and knowing where to seek help are crucial.

Missouri roads and bridges need attention. Funding shortages are among the chief explanations from MODOT for the needed repairs to be performed. The infrastructure of Missouri is crucial to the livelihood and to the safety of our state, both for Missourians and for visitors. Strong decision making is required to progress in this matter. We support further examination into several new options of improving our roadways.

In the interim, we propose two options to assist in keeping our roads safer. Because our state is centrally located in the nation, our roads are a travel corridor to freight trucks. Using this fact, we support stiffer overage penalties for 18-wheelers violating the Federal Mandate of 80,000lbs. We advocate utilizing this "Heavy-Levy" on portions of I-44, I-70, and I-55 which can be collected through weight-scale stations to help support maintenance and to hire more personnel to run the scales. Likewise, we support increasing the number of highway patrol officers to our interstates through stiffer fines on excessive speeding (15 mph+ over speed limit), DUI’s, and other dangerous driving violations.

The people of Missouri are her greatest asset. As governor, I would be an ambassador for bringing more businesses to the state. The traditional values, strong work ethic, and friendly nature of Missourians, along with the low cost of living, can attract new businesses. Growth and opportunity are what Missourians need for commerce development. Capitalizing on the prime location of the state with her roads and rail, Missouri can appeal to new businesses with these attractive distribution arteries. Certain limited tax incentives should be given to new businesses, especially entrepreneurial start-ups.

The 100,000 farms in our state help our state rank near the top in the nation for livestock and crops. Our farmers do a good job of rotating crops and keeping up with advancements in soil management and cattle breeding. Missouri ranks consistently high in cattle production. Missouri is consistently in the top five states with other livestock and crops, also. Missouri farmers and their land position our state as an agricultural powerhouse.

With a growing movement and extreme health benefits of the higher nutritional content in "organic" foods, we advocate "MOM" (Missouri Organic Move) in which incentives, subsidies, and low interest rate loans would be granted to new farmers. This initiative would not interfere with current farm systems, but the goal would be to motivate some Missouri farmers to move in this direction, capturing the growing organic desire here and in the nation. As governor, I feel Missouri needs to get ahead of the curve instead of falling behind. Currently, most of the organic food in stores is imported. This process will take collaboration from local grocery stores and supermarkets.

We are opposed to foreign country investments into our Missouri farms. We also oppose foreign countries owning Missouri farmland. Overseas interests and integrity typically doesn’t match the ethical practices of our local farmers. Because our farmers live here and raise their families here, they are more apt to protect their communities.

Additionally, we see great potential to further expand soybean bio-diesel production for economic growth. With the success of this industry, there is a timely opportunity to seize a larger market share for our economy.

"The earth brought forth vegetation, plants yielding seed according to their own kinds, and trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind. And God saw that it was good" (Genesis 1:12).

Missouri currently can boast of its low energy prices as compared to the national average. However, this favorable condition may be short-lived as federal regulations continually stiffen toward cleaner coal power centers. Because 82% of Missouri energy is derived from coal, our state will have to make wise decisions in improving our plants. New, clean burning and efficient coal plants in Tampa, FL and Temple, TX prove that this can be done. Likewise, nuclear, natural gas, hydroelectric, and solar companies will be encouraged to expand their technology for affordability and availability for our citizens.

Being personally involved with tourism for 30 years, I know the benefits this industry brings to our state. Tourism brings 11-billion-dollars into Missouri annually with nearly 300,000 jobs resulting from serving tourists. Whether it is for the sheer beauty of the "Show-Me" state, unique attractions, events, or historical sites, Missouri benefits greatly from travelers. Marketing the state to other states as a travel destination is necessary and valuable.

We love babies. Every life in Missouri is precious. We value both the mother and the child and advocate eliminating abortion permanently from our state. Mothers need counseling, attention, care, nutrition, support, and love which should be provided through community organizations and churches.

"Before I formed you in the womb I knew you..." (Jeremiah 1:5).

Recent awareness surrounding the dark issue of human trafficking has finally begun to help bring intervention and restoration in the lives of many victims. We favor legislation, too, that will aid in an end to this injustice. The "STOP" (Stop Trafficking & Obliterate Prostitution) program would focus on the cooperation from victims of the sex trade and place heavier felony charges on pimps and public awareness of johns involved. Furthermore, the secretive nature of this industry will require training and education of its destruction for children, teachers, police, doctors, motel owners, public transport workers and the general public.

Missouri’s welfare system needs reform. The present welfare and anti-poverty programs can impair work and snare welfare recipients into long-term poverty ruts. Recent changes to limits on program length should help improve the system, but further expansion to work incentives and education need insertion in order to improve the upward mobility and self-reliance of recipients. We want all our citizens to succeed.

We have been personally involved in seeking to meet the needs of Missouri’s homeless for two decades. Thousands of aimless wanderers continually take shelter under bridges and inside public restrooms, garages and other structures that provide protection from the elements. A waning economy and national Congressional abridged interests in social policies have continued to yield an increase in homelessness. Seasonal conditions in the various states results in transitory persons constantly migrating, making eradication difficult. However, a reduction in the number of Missouri’s homeless is entirely possible, though it will require a continued effort on behalf of our community-based and faith-based service providers, and others devoted to this undertaking.

Prevention needs to include identification of trigger points that lead to homelessness and rapid responses to keep families under roof. Intervention requires more immediate housing, quick job/trade training, food vouchers, counseling services, and improved communication between law enforcement, service providers, social workers, and churches. Housing denotes the central resolution to the problem of homelessness; however, it must be provided in conjunction with life skills education and job training.

Public awareness is also key to developing civic compassion and involvement. An alarming rate of teenage homelessness has infiltrated even the smallest rural towns. Although unseen by most, "couch-surfing" teens are one door away from losing shelter. Displaced teens typically are the first to turn to drugs and prostitution as a source of relief and income. Breaking this cycle early is essential in deterring life-long patterns of self-destruction.

We are supporters of the U.S. Constitution and the original intentions of the founding fathers. Because of this, we believe the state has taken on many social responsibilities that could be better fulfilled by the local church. Therefore, we will encourage local churches to become more involved in developing and administering in social assistance programs.

Contrary to popular belief, the phrase "separation of church and state" is not in the U.S. Constitution. It was a term extracted from a personal letter written by Thomas Jefferson describing the importance of limited government and to prevent its interference with religious activities. The statement was misused in a Supreme Court ruling in 1947 (Everson v. Board of Education) and has since grown into an unwritten cultural false-truth. We live in a nation founded on Christian freedom, and to extract it from our society is to unravel every fiber of our nation’s heritage and its future. It is our belief that by acknowledging God and the Bible as the unchangeable foundation for life, both personally and professionally, we are recognizing His Sovereignty and blessing upon our great country. Our founding fathers original intent for our nation was that it be as a "city on a hill" (John Winthrop 1630, Governor Massachusetts Bay Colony).

"In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall make your paths straight" (Proverbs 3:6).

"You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden" (Matthew 5:14).

The U.S. Constitution is clear in allowing Americans the right to bear arms. We are gun owners and use firearms in hunting. We encourage responsibility in gun usage, along with education. Understanding and familiarity of firearms is key to safety. Hunter safety courses provided by the Missouri Department of Conservation have been an excellent instructional program for gun safety for new and old hunters. Education on guns, ammunition, and laws are helpful in reducing accidents and promoting responsibility.

Trepidation and anxiety have immobilized many citizens in all areas of society today. We share these truths for those bound by fear: the Bible states over 365 times to "fear not," and God is our Protector.

"God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind" (2 Timothy 1:7).

"So do not fear, for I am with you" (Isaiah 41:10).

"His faithful promises are your armor and protection" (Psalm 91:4).

With a world that seemingly endorses hectic schedules, there seems to be too little time for the basics of life. Faith and family are quickly eroding in our culture because not enough citizens have stood up for their beliefs and voiced their views. The time for idleness is over. The time for complacency is done. The time for complaining is through. The time for being mute is finished. The time for action is not tomorrow; it is today. The time to be bold is now. We will pray. We will stand. We will speak. We will love. We will serve. We will lead.

"The time for action is not tomorrow; it is today.  The time to be bold is now.  We will stand.  We will speak.  We will love. We will serve.  We will lead." Will you join us?

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Spread the message of faith, hope, and love to your community through: door to door campaigning, hosting a small gathering, contacting family and friends, distributing yard signs, and/or by inviting Lester to speak at your event.

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People for Lester Turilli, Jr.
PO Box 948
Stanton, MO 63079