State Rep. Curt VanderWall has announced he won’t run for re-election and will instead run for the state Senate. That means the race for the 101st District seat is wide open.
The district goes from Northport to Ludington and has been one of the state’s most competitive in recent elections.
Only one candidate is currently in the race – Democrat Kathy Wiejaczka.
Wiejaczka is a registered nurse from Empire, who retired recently as a special education nurse from the Traverse Bay Area Intermediate School District. She also teaches nursing online for Ferris State University.
Wiejaczka serves on two local boards but has never before held elected political office.
“After the 2016 election, I started paying closer attention,” Wiejaczka says. “And after attending the Women’s March in Washington, D.C. in January of 2017, it reignited something in me that had always been there.”
Wiejaczka says reforming health care and education would be legislative priorities for her if elected.
“We all share the same values as Americans,” Wiejaczka says. “We care about safety. We care about respect. We care about accountability.”