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Why Should You Vote for Me?

As President of the Ankeny School Board, I welcomed difficult conversations with community members, staff, students, board members, union leaders, etc... I believe it's important to work together to develop a mutual understanding even in the midst of disagreement or opposing views. Chances are, we will disagree on something and my personal views may not be aligned with yours. As your representative, I believe it's my job to represent you and vote accordingly. Which means we need to be able to have respectful and civil dialogue about the issues we face whether we agree or disagree. My record is proof that I can and will build that bridge of civility and advocacy as your representative.

 

According to this Business Record article, Ankeny is "among the fastest-growing cities not only in Iowa but in the country." We are large part of Iowa's future. I believe we should have a strong and collaborative person in the Iowa House to ensure our voices are are part of the conversation driving legislation. I believe my experience and record are proof that I am the best candidate to represent District 41 and help lead Ankeny, and Iowa, into the future. 

About Me.

As a sixth generation Iowan, my roots touch the core of what this country was built on.
My inspiration for public service comes from my Grandpa Kuempel, a man I admired. He had been a tow boat operator in the Navy and after that owned and operated Kuempel True Value in Guttenberg, Iowa.

A family business passed down from generation to generation for over 100 years. He also served on the local hospital board for 30 years and was part of providing a county hospital for the town and surrounding communities. He was a great man and his values of integrity, service, and community are a big part of who I am.

 

Much like why my grandpa served his country and his community, I have a clear sense of duty to serve, a responsibility to stand up, and a calling that’s bigger than myself.

Family.

My wife and I have lived in Ankeny longer than we've lived anywhere else, nearing fifteen years. We have been married almost twenty years and have four amazing children. Ankeny isn't a place we're passing through, this is our home, this is where we have planted our roots, this is our community. We feel a responsibility to step up and be a positive influence for the future of Ankeny.

Our family is much like any other suburban family, during the day my wife and I both work full-time jobs and our kids go to public school. On weekday nights you can find us taking our kids to activities, attending local events, or just spending time at home. We love to get outside and play in the snow, sun, leaves, or whatever each season brings. As Ankeny grows, we want everyone who lives here and moves here to have the same opportunity to enjoy our community as much as we do. My family supports me in this campaign to ensure we have an experienced leader representing Ankeny's interests in the Iowa House and working with local officials on key issues as our population rises and needs grow.

Experience.

I started my career in Des Moines at age nineteen in the insurance industry. If you told me then that I'd be running for the Iowa House now, I wouldn't have believed you. My career path has taken many twists and turns, and while it's been stressful at times, the opportunities I've had to learn and grow in nearly every level of an organization has been invaluable. In addition to insurance, I've worked in men's fashion, banking, FinTech, non-profit, IT, digital marketing, and website development. From the bottom of the org chart to the top, from national corporations to local boot-strapped start-ups, I've been part of it all.

 

The value I've been told I bring in all of these instances, is an entrepreneurial approach to solving complex organizational problems with strategic relational solutions. I'll never claim to be the smartest person in the room, but my unique combination of skills and experiences gives me a perspective and a way of looking at things that has proven to be valuable in the many situations, including as a policymaker.

My first experience running for office was in 2019 when I was elected to the Ankeny School Board. With the pandemic hitting a few months after being sworn in, the learning curve was steep and I was in the minority when voting to keep our kids in school and not requiring masks. In 2021 I was elected by the board to be Vice President and then became President half way through the year until the end of my term in November 2023. In my time on the school board, I learned how to reasonably and respectfully stand up for what I believe in while also working behind the scenes to influence change at the board table and administrative cabinet. There were a few successes, lots of failures, a couple regrets, and a lifetime worth of lessons about how to be effective where it matters most.

What I Stand For.

I believe in fiscal responsibility, state sovereignty, capitalism and the free market, limited government, and a strong education system. I support a balanced budget, our awesome Police department, and creating an environment where businesses thrive. I believe as a representative, it’s my job to listen to this community and make your voices heard at the capital. Vote for me so that we can join forces, band together, and move forward as one community to be a part of something bigger than anything we could ever do on our own. Vote Ryan Weldon, and let’s win this seat together!

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