DATE: Tuesday, May 15, 2018
CONTACT: Rebecca Francik
PASCO— Longtime Pasco City Council member and career educator Rebecca Francik has announced she will seek the position representing District 16 in the Washington State House. Francik, a mother of seven and librarian at Rowena Chess Elementary, will run as a Democrat, having previously served on the Pasco City Council in a non-partisan capacity.
During her 21 years on the city council, Francik helped lead Pasco through both tough economic times and periods of explosive growth. She is particularly proud of her work to reduce crime, invest in parks and roads, and encourage economic opportunity for small business owners throughout the community.
“I’m proud of my work to bring equity and opportunity to all the people I served,” said Francik, who moved to Pasco with her husband in 1982. “Working in the best interest of the people, I led efforts to make real improvements in the quality of life for people across our city, while maintaining low taxes and strong public services. I want to bring that same commitment to Olympia where we need leaders who listen to our neighbors here at home, not partisan special interest groups.”
Francik is motivated to run by changes she sees throughout Southeast Washington, including the expansion of different agricultural sectors, and the needs of a growing and diverse population throughout the region.
“I’ve spent my entire life in this region. Having grown up on a small dry land farm, I appreciate the financial importance of farmers and farming communities, and the need for strong voices in Olympia to represent our growing and changing agricultural economy.”
A career librarian and elementary school educator, Francik is particularly passionate about education and opportunity.
“It took too long for politicians to address funding issues in our schools, especially rural school districts like many in our part of the state,” said Francik. “We still see too many excuses, and too little commitment from politicians who cared more about their ideology than helping our kids succeed. I know firsthand what it takes to provide kids with the resources they need to get ahead. We have to do better than the status quo.”
Affordable housing and services for the vulnerable is another core value Francik will bring to the legislature. “My family experienced housing and food insecurity in tough economic times. I know how it feels when the rent is due and the bank account is empty,” said Francik. “We owe it to our veterans, seniors, and struggling families to provide the housing and services needed to help in times of crisis. Issues of poverty, addiction, and mental health are not limited to urban areas—we need to address localized issues to help people regain self-sufficiency and rebuild their lives.”
Francik plans an aggressive grassroots campaign visiting all parts of the district.
“We need leaders who listen to all of our neighbors, not just small groups of party officials,” said Francik. “I’ve already begun meeting with folks across the district and look forward to continuing these conversations throughout the summer and fall.”