About Pat Kreitlow
When a child is born to a pair of 18-year-olds with no plans for college, the deck is stacked against all three of them. But my parents had something special working in their favor, a willingness to work hard and push their son to do the same.
During the 60's at the height of the Cold War, my dad served in the Army along the East German border. He continued to serve in the Guard and Reserve until his retirement... shortly after training today's troops for conditions they could face in Iraq and Afghanistan. In the 70's and 80's he also worked for the old Chicago & Northwestern Railroad as a union brakeman.
When my parents divorced, my mom raised me and my two younger sisters to work hard in school and help keep the household running as she worked multiple jobs to get off of food stamps and support my little brother who was sick for all of his brief nine year life. Medicaid was literally a lifeline that prevented a lifetime of hospital debt.
Pell grants and Stafford loans allowed me to be first in my family to graduate from college. Although I had zero disposable income, I recall being enthralled with a Batman shirt that was a gift for my 21st birthday. This started my fascination with Batman apparel - I scrimped and saved just to have a couple of T shirts with my fav superhero. But in spite of the joy those items brought me, life was very austere - and it colored my outlook for the better. I still have those faded Batman shirts and they symbolize a time in my life when things were not so great. Small things often matter to people who have little, and that is a valuable lesson in understanding people and their motives. It was at UW-Eau Claire that I met Sharry, my wife for these past 25 years. We have two adults daughters and a 5-year-old grandson.
For years I worked to help my neighbors become familiar with what was happening in their world. I was a journalist at radio stations in several Wisconsin cities before joining WEAU-TV 13 in Eau Claire. As the evening 6:00 & 10:00 news anchor, I especially enjoyed "pulling back the curtain" to explain to people what their leaders in government were doing or what motivated their actions. It was a way to ensure our elected officials were accountable to their constituents, my viewers.
In 2006 I decided to further my public service by running for a seat in the Wisconsin Legislature. For four years as a State Senator, I worked to "pull back the curtain" and show my neighbors what state government could do to make life easier for people who want to work hard and only ask for respect in return.
During my four years in the legislature, I was proud to initiate or play a role in:
- Passing the most sweeping Campaign Finance Reform in a generation with my "Impartial Justice" bill that made clean public financing a more viable option in Wisconsin Supreme Court races.
- Closing the state's biggest corporate tax loophole so that tax dollars could be used to reward actual job creation as well as education and health care.
- Expanding health care coverage to thousands of Wisconsin families who lost their jobs or whose employers canceled their insurance.
- Revising funding formulas to give more help to rural schools.
- Putting the Chippewa Valley on the map for a possible high-speed rail corridor that otherwise would have gone exclusively through La Crosse, excluding most of northwest Wisconsin.
- Championing new energy jobs, helping entrepreneurs find new markets from renewable fuels that are Wisconsin grown and Wisconsin developed.
Are you ready to help put our country back to work by giving us a new and better Congress?
The recovery our nation needs cannot begin until our elected officials set aside self-interest and work toward solutions that benefit all of America, not just a privileged few.
The time for new ideas and action is now. America works best when we work together.
I have raised my family here in Wisconsin's 7th Congressional District. I have worked here covering the stories of your neighbors and I have represented you in a legislature that used to make it a priority to focus on creating jobs, opportunity and security.
Now, I need your help to bring those values back to Washington. Please sign your name to this petition showing your support for my campaign… or even take a moment to make a contribution of whatever you can generously give to help us win in November 2012.
I'm looking forward to working on creating a better future in Wisconsin and across our country.
Let's prove that Americans can have different backgrounds, different opinions and different priorities… and still work together to solve the challenges that go beyond party differences.
Let's get to work. The time is now. Come join the team.