Contact: Johanna Kichton, 518.867.9928, [email protected]
WASHINGTON, D.C.–People’s Action today endorsed a slate of 17 Wisconsin state-level candidates for election. The candidates are running movement politics, people-powered campaigns and will fight for the People’s Action People’s Platform once elected. Each of these candidates is also endorsed by People’s Action’s Wisconsin member organization, Citizen Action of Wisconsin.
Today’s endorsees for State Senate include:
- Joni Anderson for State Senate District 14
- Melissa Sargent for State Senate District 16
- Aaron Wojciechowski for State Senate District 18
Today’s endorsees for State Assembly include:
- JoAnna Bautch for State Assembly District 08
- Kim Butler for State Assembly District 28
- Marisabel Cabrera for State Assembly District 09
- Dave Considine for State Assembly District 81
- Brian Giles for State Assembly District 69
- Josefine Jaynes for State Assembly District 96
- Jessica Katzenmeyer for State Assembly District 15
- Kriss Marion for State Assembly District 51
- Kristina Shelton for State Assembly District 90
- Emily Siegrist for State Assembly District 24
- Lisa Subeck for State Assembly District 78
- Emily Voight for State Assembly District 03
- Melissa Winker for State Assembly District 38
- Sarah Yacoub for State Assembly District 30
“People’s Action is proud to endorse these candidates alongside Citizen Action of Wisconsin. For too long, poor and working communities in Wisconsin have suffered at the hands of politicians backed by greedy, wealthy, interests,” People’s Action Director of Movement Governing Brooke Adams said. “During this time of unprecedented economic and racial crises, we need leaders who know what it’s like to be part of the multiracial working class, and will fight for us and for justice.”
Joni Anderson – State Senate District 14
Joni Anderson grew up in Spirit, Wisc., on a small dairy farm. She fished and swam in the lakes and rivers, walked the paths in the fields and woods. It is where she learned to respect and appreciate the natural beauty and wildlife Wisconsin has to offer. It is also where she watched her parents, relatives and neighbors struggle to make a living. For the last 27 years she has lived in Adams, Wisconsin and worked in an auto-parts manufacturing plant in Necedah, Wisconsin. There she was a member of UE Local 1107 for 25 years and during that time served in many capacities; secretary, 1st Shift Steward, Safety Committee, Vice President, President and an elected member of UE Western Regional Council.
“I am a lifelong resident of Wisconsin. A retired machine operator/ and A UE member/ union VP. Member of OWR/ Citizen Action of Wisconsin. I love traveling and seeing the state park and National Park system as well as one of my favorite past times playing pool.” Anderson said.
Melissa Sargent – State Senate District 16
Melissa Sargent was born and raised in Dane County. A former small business owner, Melissa served on the Dane County Board prior to being elected as State Representative of Wisconsin’s 48th Assembly District.
“I’m running to represent the 16th Senate District because I have the passion, experience, and work ethic to make Dane County–as well as Wisconsin as a whole–a better place for all families to live, work, and play. I am honored and humbled to be receiving this endorsement from People’s Action. From the fight for affordable housing and quality healthcare for all, to issues of climate and social justice and decriminalization, People’s Action and I share the similar vision of a better, more progressive future for all,” Sargent said.
Aaron Wojciechowski – State Senate District 18
Aaron Wojciechowski, 23, is a two-term local elected official, aftercare educator, and proud UW Oshkosh Graduate. Aaron is focused on bringing back honest forward-thinking leadership and ensuring every Wisconsinite has a seat at the decision making table. Aaron is running on a common-sense forward-thinking platform that prioritizes working class Wisconsinites. If elected, Aaron would become the first Latinx person elected to the Wisconsin State Senate, one of the youngest members elected, and one of the few openly LGBTQ+ members.
“I’m running for the State Senate to address the critical challenges our current leaders have failed to address,” Wojciechowski said. “As the next State Senator for district 18, I will fight to make healthcare more affordable and accessible, ensure our public schools are well-funded, pass meaningful criminal justice reform, and create a sustainable economy that works for everyone. I’m proud to have the People’s Action endorsement because we share the mission to legislate with liberty and justice for all. WE’re fighting for a better future and I’m excited to stand together in that fight.”
JoAnna Bautch – State Assembly District 08
JoAnna Bautch is running to be the 8th District State Representative to put people first. She believes that by working together, we can make our community healthier, ensure a quality education for all of our children, keep our communities safe and create more economic opportunity for everyone. She is ready to work for the community on day one!
“I’m running for office to put the working people of Milwaukee’s near south side first and create a community where all of us can thrive, not just the wealthy and privileged few. I am so excited to have People’s Actions’ endorsement because they stand with the millions of working people across our country who are committed to achieving racial, economic, climate, and gender justice. It is a tremendous honor to have People’s Actions’ on my team,” Bautch said.
Kim Butler – State Assembly District 28
Kim Butler is a rural Wisconsin mom and small business owner, a former tv producer and 14 year cancer survivor who is an active community volunteer.
“Income inequality and greed are the issues that got me off the political sidelines 5 years ago and I am proud to have the endorsement of People’s Action, a group that puts the interests of everyday Americans first. From health care to social, racial and environmental justice issues, we can build a better, more just society that works for everyone,” Butler said.
Marisabel Cabrera – State Assembly District 09
Marisabel Cabrera is an immigration attorney and business owner. She currently represents the 9th Assembly District where she strives to ensure that each and every person — regardless of nationality, gender or orientation — has the same opportunities, services and protections to prosper and safely enjoy their home and community.
“We need someone who understands what it’s like to fight for everything they have. We need someone who will fight for the future of our district. I have a record of bold leadership, standing up for our progressive values and most importantly delivering results for our community,” Cabrera said.
Dave Considine – State Assembly District 81
Dave Considine was elected to the Assembly following a successful and rewarding career as a middle school teacher. Dave was a teacher at Jack Young Middle School in the Baraboo School District for twenty-nine years. His experiences as an educator, association leader, steward of the land, outdoorsman, hunter, trainer in Nonviolent Crisis Intervention, nationally recognized dairy goat judge, singer and track coach will benefit the district. Dave Considine and his wife Gretchen have resided in the Baraboo Bluffs and Township of Caledonia for over 39 years. They have raised five children on their farm and are enjoying sharing their farm with their ten grandchildren. Dave was born in Janesville, WI, raised in North Prairie, WI and attended Mukwonago High School. He has a Bachelor of Science in Education from the University of Wisconsin Whitewater. He also has a Master of Arts in Education from Viterbo University.
Brian Giles – State Assembly District 69
Brian Giles has spent his whole life in Marshfield, born and raised, and along with his wife Elizabeth, is raising his three boys there, Jeremiah, Trenton, and Alexander. He attended college at UW River Falls and UW Marshfield. He has worked in the community including for numerous years at Mid State Truck and most recently on a Presidential campaign and has volunteered on campaigns for the past 16 years. Besides being active in the past coaching baseball, football and soccer he also volunteers for Meals on Wheels and donates platelets at the blood center. He decided to run for Assembly to be a voice for the 69th district and not special interests. Most of his platform is based on issues that this district had shown overwhelming support for on referendum votes. Some of these include: getting money out of politics, fair maps, legalization of medical marijuana and decriminalization and legalization of recreational marijuana and expansion of Badgercare. He is also a firm believer in mail in voting, especially with the current situation. He believes all people should be heard and that’s why he will stand with everyone including those too often ignored or marginalized.
“I am a lifelong resident of the district and a lifelong Democrat,” Giles said. “I am running for office to be a Representative if the people too often ignored and am excited for the People’s Actions endorsement because People’s Action is a leader in progressive politics for the people.”
Josefine Jaynes – State Assembly District 96
Josefine Jaynes will bring a fresh perspective and new energy to the legislature. She has a strong desire to build a bright future for her district for many generations to come. Having been raised in a military family, she has witnessed firsthand inspiring examples of dedication, faith and active community involvement. These examples have instilled in her a strong sense of duty and service.
“I’m Josefine Jaynes and I am running to represent Wisconsin’s 96th Assembly District. I am firmly grounded by my family, my faith and my community and I am at a unique place in my life where I am able to commit 100% of my time and effort to serving this district. I will bring a fresh new perspective and a strong voice for our rural communities to the legislature. I am honored to receive People’s Action’s endorsement and am excited to work with them to fight for individual rights and economic fairness for all of our citizens,” Jaynes said.
Jessica Katzenmeyer – State Assembly District 15
Jessica Katzenmeyer is an openly transgender woman, lgbtq activist, former Teamster Local 344 for over 12 years for which she was Secretary of their Political and Legislative Committee for 3 years, former Podcast show Host, former actress, Emerge Wisconsin Alum Class of 2017 and LGBTQ Victory Institure Alum. She graduated from UW-Milwaukee with a degree in Communications and Minor in Political Science in 2002 and has lived in the Milwaukee area for over 23 years.
“I’m running for office for 3 reasons. One, I’ve always had the passion to want to help and serve people. Two, I nearly died from a Staph infection last year and the week long hospital stay would have bee $80,000 without insurance. I believe no one should ever have to worry about filing for bankruptcy or going into debt over life saving medical treatment. Final reason is and why I am excited to have the People’s Action endorsement, as a representative, people should always come first,” Katzenmeyer said. “Our current Republican leadership in the state assembly in Wisconsin does not put people first. We need to bring representation back to where it belongs — is with the people. I am honored to be the 2nd evere transgender woman candidate in the history of Wisconsin Assembly elections and I will be honoreed to be the first ever elected transgender woman in the Wisconsin State Assembly! Thank you People Action for your endorsement!”
Kriss Marion – State Assembly District 51
Kriss Marion runs a BnB on her small farm, and serves on her rural county board. She has recruited and trained many women to run for office. As a mom, grandma and small business owner, she knows that rural communities and all working people need wise leadership and good policy to rise stronger and better from 2020.
“We have a historic opportunity to make systemic change that will advance America toward her aspirations of liberty and justice for all,” Marion said. “I share the vision and hope of People’s Action and I’m proud to have this endorsement.”
Kristina Shelton – State Assembly District 90
Kristina Shelton has an extensive career in teaching, public health, and nonprofit management. She currently serves as the Vice President of the Green Bay School Board.
“I am running to restore integrity and representation to the 90th Assembly District. The issues we face, together, such as the calculated defunding of public education, climate change denial, rising health care costs, and diminished workers’ rights require us to act courageously and swiftly. Now is the time to demand our representation in Madison,” Shelton said. “An endorsement from People’s Action reinforces our commitment to building a movement marching for the liberation of all working people, the demand for economic, gender, racial, disability, and climate justice, and the courageous action that builds solidarity across our deep divides. When we work together, we can demand and work toward the seemingly impossible. I am honored to receive this endorsement and will work to uphold the People’s Platform 2020.”
Emily Siegrist – State Assembly District 24
Emily Siegrist is running for the Wisconsin Assembly because as a nurse, teacher, veteran and mother of two young children, she has the experience, vision and dedication to go to Madison and work for policies that strengthen our community.
“I am grateful to have the support of People’s Action, and am excited to have backing from the communities that have strong membership and connection to your organization,” Siegrist said.
Lisa Subeck – State Assembly District 78
Lisa Subeck has spent her career working to better the lives of children and families in her community – first as an early childhood educator with Head Start; then coordinating housing programs for women and families at risk of homelessness; and later through her work on public policy as the Executive Director of NARAL Pro-Choice Wisconsin and of United Wisconsin. Lisa served two terms on the Madison City Council before her election to the Wisconsin State Assembly, where she has emerged as a leader on progressive issues including fighting for a fair economy that works for all Wisconsinites, strengthening our neighborhood schools and university system, ensuring access to affordable health care and reproductive health care services, campaign finance reform, fighting climate change and protecting our natural resources, standing up for equity and fairness, and preserving our democracy.
“My work with struggling individuals and families at Head Start and the YWCA pushed me to do more to change systems that have so clearly failed too many of our neighbors,” Subeck said. “Through my work there, I could help one person or one family at a time overcome systemic barriers and navigate our broken systems, but at the end of the day, the system was still broken. I am running for reelection because I know we can do better – and all of the people of our state deserve better. In my next term in office, I will continue the fight for change and move us toward the day when we truly achieve justice for all.”
Emily Voight – State Assembly District 03
Emily Voight was born and raised in Appleton, Wisconsin; she’s a 4th generation Wisconsinite. She comes from a long line of dairy farmers, and public service workers. She graduated from Appleton North High School with honors in 2002 and continued her education at the University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh in Business Administration with a major in Marketing and an emphasis in Small Business Management and Entrepreneurship. From there, she gained her first real-life experience, working for J. J. Keller & Associates in their marketing and sales departments. After leaving J.J. Keller, she became an Assistant Manager and buyer for Henry’s Bookstore in Oshkosh. She believes this hands-on experience in running a business has contributed to her deeper understanding of the problems that small businesses face. She went back to school and earned her Secondary Education degree in Broadfield Social Science with a minor in History and emphases in Economics, Political Science, and Sociology. She student taught at Maplewood Middle School in Menasha, and Appleton West High School. In April 2020 she was elected to Calumet County Board of Supervisors.
“I’m running because of my children, and the need for affordable accessible health insurance in our state. As a single mom and having an autistic son, we qualify for the state healthcare plan, but since it isn’t fully funded there have been times he has been denied the therapy he so desperately needs and deserves. I’m a 4th generation Wisconsinite and I love my state but we can do better and deserve better! I’m so excited about the endorsement from People’s Action because it embodies the spirit of our campaign, this is truly a grassroots campaign!” Voight said.
Melissa Winker – State Assembly District 38
Melissa Winker is a twenty-year educator, dedicated to working families not special interests. She trusts science and expertise, and she is motivated to defend the vulnerable. She believes the Republican-controlled Legislature is failing to lead during this urgent health/economic/racial reckoning crisis and that Wisconsinites need more than just tax cuts and freedom from regulation. She will work with integrity to engage people in democracy. She thinks inequality of opportunity is a great challenge, evidenced by child poverty in cities, suburbs, and rural areas. She will fight for a legislative agenda that includes: accepting Medicaid expansion funds; investing fully in public schools, not private vouchers; enabling regional transit and broadband internet; protecting clean water; and establishing a $15 minimum wage and paid sick leave. She supports legislative districts by independent commissions, not by majority political parties.
“The endorsement from People’s Action means a great deal to us. With you at our side, Winker for Wisconsin will be even better able to raise voices for justice and equality. The people of Wisconsin are hurting, and I am ready to get to work for them,” Winker said.
Sarah Yacoub – State Assembly District 30
Sarah Yacoub, formerly a criminal prosecutor, is a nonprofit attorney, mother of four who understands that we can’t truly thrive as a community until we have a system that is fair to and supportive of working families. She is running for office to raise the bar on what it means to be a public servant in Western Wisconsin and to fight for policies that benefit the community as a whole.
“I am humbled by and honored to have the endorsement of People’s Action. Social justice is so central to a prosperous community. I look forward to working alongside People’s Action towards a brighter tomorrow for everyone,” Yacoub said.
People’s Action’s Movement Politics program recruits, runs, and elects progressives into local and statewide offices across the country. Since 2016, People’s Action has helped elect over 350 movement politics candidates. The program focuses on electing women, people of color, and low-income people who are grounded in progressive movement building with our member organizations.
About People’s Action
People’s Action is a national network of 40 state and local grassroots, power-building organizations united in fighting for justice. Our organization recently released a vision for a national Homes Guarantee that has already prompted major legislation from champions including U.S. Reps. Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and Rashida Tlaib. We operate the largest progressive rural organizing project in the country. The Nation called our Iowa presidential forum the “most in-depth, people-powered forum” of the 2020 cycle.