Martha Paschke, Illinois House 65th District Democratic nomineeSeptember 7, 2020
Running for: Representative for IL House District 65
Political/civic background: I’m a first-time candidate, but I’ve been actively engaged in my community for many years. I currently serve as secretary for the Geneva Library Foundation. After the 2016 election, I organized a local chapter of Action for a Better Tomorrow for people wanting to engage in positive action for change. I was also a founding member and co-leader of Kane and Kendall County Moms Demand Action. I’ve served as a volunteer with World Relief, as a Girl Scout troop leader, and as an elder and volunteer of 18 years through my church, Fox Valley Presbyterian Church.
Occupation: Like many people, especially mothers who adapt their careers around having and raising children, my career has had many twists and turns. I currently work as a patient intake coordinator at a local psychology practice. I am also certified as a middle school social studies teacher, and I worked for over 14 years as a childbirth educator and labor doula.
Education: I hold a bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a minor in Family Studies from Concordia University in St. Paul, MN (summa cum laude) and a master’s degree in teaching with certification and endorsement in middle school social studies from Aurora University, Aurora, IL.
Campaign website: martha4il65.com
Facebook: Martha Paschke for IL 65th
The Chicago Sun-Times Editorial Board sent nominees for the Illinois House of Representatives a list of questions to find out their views on a range of important issues facing the state of Illinois and their districts. Martha Paschke submitted the following responses:
The COVID-19 pandemic has hammered the finances of Illinois. The state is staring at a $6.2 billion budget shortfall in this fiscal year. What should be done? Please be specific.
The COVID-19 crisis has caused unprecedented budget challenges for every unit of government, every family, and every business. There’s no getting around the fact that these challenges will require difficult decisions and a very honest reevaluation of our spending priorities. Priority must be given to spending that covers essential services, programs, and organizations and I think we all have a sharper understanding of what “essential” means following the onset of the Covid-19 crisis. Our healthcare system and first responders are essential to our family’s safety and health. We have to support them, otherwise we will never overcome these challenges. Our nonprofits and social service organizations have proven to be a lifeline for so many – including many in our community who never thought they’d be relying on a social safety net but have found themselves facing impossible circumstances. Programs like Meals on Wheels and food pantries have seen drastic increases in demand. We need to support small businesses and displaced workers who are simply trying to get by…