A Publication of WTVP

40 Leaders Under Forty

Zachary M. Oyler
Zachary M. Oyler

Zachary M. Oyler | 38

Realtor, At-Large Peoria City Councilman

As one of his nominators said, “Councilman Oyler is a stunning example of servant leadership in our community. He is a perennial volunteer for countless community causes. A ‘workhorse’ if not a ‘showhorse,’ Zach quietly helps countless individuals in our community without anyone knowing … 

“I have watched him help a developmentally disabled man in our community for years with errands and grocery runs … A retired mutual friend had his pipes freeze last winter and Zach jumped out of bed at midnight and rushed over to help him unthaw the pipes for hours … Zach doesn’t do these things for recognition, and he’d be frustrated to learn I’d share them.”

Indeed, Zach Oyler has served on the Peoria Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA), the Downtown Development Corporation, Peoria City/County Landfill Committee, the Peoria Land Bank Committee, the Springdale Cemetery Authority Board and the Friends of Peoria Public Library. He’s the past president of the Peoria Historical Society Board and the Center Bluff Neighborhood Association, as well as a board member of Trinity Lutheran Church. He has volunteered for Peoria Promise, Phoenix Community Development, United Way, Southside Mission and others. He has twice been elected to the Peoria City Council.

In his professional life, he runs a successful real estate business – Oyler Real Estate, ReMax Traders — and is active with the Peoria Area Association of Realtors. Prior to that, he worked at Caterpillar, ultimately becoming a requirements manager there.

As another nominator said, “Zach has a relationship in every neighborhood in the city.”

Best advice: “‘Focus on what you are doing and not others. If you’re looking in the rearview mirror, you’re not going to get anywhere.’ – David Leitch (former state representative from Peoria).” 

Favorite cause: “Peoria Historical Society. I believe our history is an incredibly important part of who we are as a community and should be protected, preserved, and shared.” 

Local inspiration: “I have two. Retired state Rep. David Leitch … should be an inspiration to any public servant for his tireless dedication to solving problems, supporting others, driving our community in a positive direction, working across the aisle, and honestly telling people how it is regardless of the impact or reaction. Former Caterpillar CEO Doug Oberhelman. In my former life at Caterpillar, he treated everyone the same regardless of the role in the company. He always maintained a relentless dedication to our Peoria community, which he and (wife) Diane continue to support today. While many other business and community leaders have left for warmer climates, better tax situations and more amenities, they stay!”