I would like to introduce myself to you and tell you about why I am running for the Idaho Senate and extend an invitation to you as an informed voter.
As a child growing up on a potato farm, it was not uncommon to cool off in the summer by using an empty potato cellar as a playground. Running horses in the cellar as we played “pony express” was great entertainment. This was my experience as a child growing up in the Rising River area of Bingham County. Things have changed but there are still some common themes, playing outdoors and riding horses are good for the soul.
My name is Julie VanOrden, and I am a lifelong resident of Bingham County. I grew up and worked on a farm where my parents raised potatoes and wheat. I moved pipe in the fields and worked during potato planting and harvesting seasons. I graduated from Blackfoot High School, attended College of Southern Idaho in Twin Falls and received a certification from the ISU College of Vocational Technology.
I married Garth VanOrden in 1978, and we began our own farming operation in 1982. We have four children-Shaun, Dillon, Jason (deceased) and Lisa. Our two oldest sons are partners in our farming business and our daughter currently lives and works in Higashi Hiroshima, Japan. My community involvement includes volunteering in the schools where my children attended and serving on the Snake River School District Board of Trustees (10 years). In 2012 I was elected to the Idaho House of Representatives and served for 6 years. During the last two years of my tenure, I was Chairwoman of the House Education Committee. I was then appointed to the Idaho Public Charter School Commission and the Idaho Potato Commission.
Being involved in local and state government has been an important part of my life. My service in state government came when my last child had graduated from high school. I delayed serving outside of my home until a later time in my life because my family has always been and still is the most important focus in my life.
I am a member of the Republican Party because I believe that government overreach needs to be controlled. Regulations should only be used when they are a benefit to citizens. Making sure there is accountability attached to public dollars is critical in implementing programs that are useful and meaningful. I strongly support parental involvement in education, I know the 2nd Amendment is a right that is never to be infringed, and I am well versed in the agricultural needs of our community and state.
This is not my first election, which is how I know that sometimes outside groups use lies and innuendo to try to influence voters. If that happens in the coming weeks, I hope you will feel free to reach out to me directly so I can correct the record and talk to you about the issues that really matter. Here is my personal email address (email@example.com) and my phone number (208-684-4052). I look forward to representing you in the Idaho Senate and appreciate your vote on May 17.