Mark Ludwig - MDP Rural Caucus Chair

miruralcaucus@gmail.com

Mark was born and raised in Michigan. His youth was spent assisting his father during the early days of the environmental movement, studying Great Lakes water birds affected by industrial pollution. He settled in Allegan County, founding a small beef farm in Clyde Township in 2005 with his wife Kim. Mark served on the Fennville Public School Board, Clyde Township Planning Commission and currently serves on the Allegan Conservation District Board of Directors. He is also Vice Chair of the Michigan Democratic Party Rural Caucus and is an alternate to the MDP State Central Committee. Mark graduated from Michigan State with a degree in Environmental Issues and has a Short Course Degree from UW Madison in Grass Based Dairy.

Peggy Raddatz - MDP Rural Caucus Treasurer

peg.raddatz@gmail.com

I have been on the Executive Board of the Manistee County Democratic Party, in some capacity, for the past 25 years. I no longer serve on the Executive Board, but remain a member of the Leadership Team. In addition, I currently serve as an Officer of the MDP Senior Caucus, the MDP Rural Caucus, the MI Rural PAC, the Rural Michigan Action Alliance, and the Lakeside Club of Manistee County.

I served this last campaign cycle as Treasurer for four State Representative Candidates. I’d like to say here that this State needs to train more people in Campaign Finance so they can
be Treasurers for candidates. Such people are few and far between and we need many more!

My husband and I reside in rural Mason County, but associate ourselves with the City of Manistee in Manistee County. My husband, a retired school superintendent, raises heritage turkeys for his business, Bourbon Red Heritage Farms. I keep the books for the business.

Brian Hoduski - Region 1 Vice Chair

Gogebic, Ontonagon, Houghton, Keweenaw, and Iron Counties

miruralcaucus@gmail.com

Brian Hoduski is a lifelong Democrat and has been active with the Houghton County Democratic Party since moving there from Grand Marais in 1999. He has served as co-chair of the HCDP since 2006. He learned from boyhood about rural issues helping on his Grandfather’s farm in Menominee County. He trained as a fishery biologist and geographer and has worked in conservation and museum curation since 1986. He enjoys cooking, gardening, hunting, traveling, and his grandkids.

Robert Anderson - Region 2 Vice Chair

Baraga, Marquette, Dickinson and Alger

miruralcaucus@gmail.com

Robert Anderson is a lifelong Democratic and has been active with the Marquette County Democratic Party for many years. Robert graduated from MSU College of Law and his first law job was serving as an attorney for the US Dept.of Housing and Urban Development in the Carter Administration.

He practices Elder Law and Disability Rights throughout the UP and has taught law courses for MTU and NMU. In 1986 Robert ran for US Congress as a Democratic in the UP and Northern Michigan against an incumbent Republican. Robert and his wife live in Marquette, and enjoy biking, cross country skiing and their grandchildren.

Glen Miller - Region 3 Vice Chair

Schoolcraft, Delta, Menominee, Luce, Chippewa and Mackinac Counties

miruralcaucus@gmail.com

Jenny Johnson - Region 4 Vice Chair

Emmet, Cheboygan, Presque Isle, Alpena, and Charlevoix

miruralcaucus@gmail.com

Tim Dowd - Region 5 Vice Chair

Leelanau, Grand Traverse, Antrim, Kalkaska and Benzie Counties

miruralcaucus@gmail.com

Born in Detroit. Lifelong Michigan Democrat. 50 year member of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners. Treasurer of the Leelanau County Democratic Party. Trail Ambassador for the Friends of Sleeping Bear Heritage Trail. Lives in Cedar, Mi with wife Kathy, dog(Winnie) and cat(Ozzie). Former trustee of Carpenters local #202 Traverse City. Four children Ryan business agent for the Operating Engineers International, Dr. Sarah Greene MD, anesthesiologist at University of Chicago hospital, Grace Splude, manager Roadside B&G Bloomfield Hills, MI. Hollie Dowd MPH for Deloitte US New York.

Open - Region 6 Vice Chair

Missaukee, Otsego, Montmorency and Crawford Counties

miruralcaucus@gmail.com
This position is currently open. Interested? Contact miruralcaucus@gmail.com

Open - Region 7 Vice Chair

Oscoda, Alcona and Iosco Counties

miruralcaucus@gmail.com
This position is currently open. Interested? Contact miruralcaucus@gmail.com

John Helge - Region 8 Vice Chair

Wexford, Mason, Lake, Oceana and Manistee Counties

johnmhelge@gmail.com

I am excited to have the opportunity to serve as the new Region 8 Vice Chair of the Michigan Rural Caucus. I am currently the Chair of the Manistee Dems.

I have lived in Manistee County for over 22 years. I recently retired from Nalco Water an Ecolab Company after a 40-year career leading field technical sales teams. During my first ten years in Manistee, I was responsible for our operations in Michigan, Ohio, and Indiana. Then, during my final 12 years, I was responsible for my company’s business relationship with major clients, first in North America and then globally. I had a very fulfilling career focused on water-related challenges and environmental sustainability.

I look forward to hearing from you anytime you have a question or idea to improve our Rural Caucus.

Tim Prosch - Region 9 Vice Chair

Muskegon and Kent Counties

miruralcaucus@gmail.com

My name is TP and I’ve spent the better part of my life in Montague which is in White River Township which is in Muskegon County. Born and raised in Chicago, I spent all of my summers in the White Lake area, courted my wife here, my daughter had her wedding in the backyard. This place is the Heart of our Family! 3 years ago, when I retired from a career in Marketing and Advertising. My wife, Pam, and I moved here full-time. We love the Rural Life.

1. First foray into MI Politics (25 years ago)
Working with the WRT Board and DEQ (now, EGLE) to protect our dune and beach from a Developer who wanted to build a road through the dunes so he could get trucks in to erect a McMansion near the beach. We finally raised $1 million locally to buy him out.

2. Second Experience in Politics
Strategist and fund raiser for Rob Davidson, who ran for Congress a few years ago. I also did the same more recently for Brian Hostika who ran for State Rep in the (old) 91st district.

3. Currently, I’m a Board Member for ROAD (which stands for: Reviving Our American Democracy). It’s a local non-partisan collection of citizens in Muskegon County. We’ve worked closely with VNP (Voters, not Politicians) on the recent re-districting maps.

Jessie Iliff List - Region 10 Vice Chair

Newayo, Isabella and Mecosta Counties

miruralcaucus@gmail.com

Jessie Iliff List has been a member of the Mecosta County Democratic Party for the last 15 years. She has also volunteered for Volunteers Not Politicians and actively participated in getting signatures, educating, and promoting the passage of Proposal Two- a proposal to create an Independent Citizens Redistricting Commission. Later on, for the 2022 election cycle, she actively campaigned for two other proposals: Proposal Two, the Voting Rights Act, an amendment to change voting procedures to make voting more accessible, and Proposal 3, the Right to Reproductive Freedom.

Elspeth Inglis - Region 11 Vice Chair

Barry, Ionia, Montcalm and Gratiot Counties

miruralcaucus@gmail.com

Elspeth is retired from her career as a history educator in classrooms and museums where she also focused her work on community collaborations. Designing museum programs and projects brought her in close partnership with marginalized communities in rural and urban areas of Southwest Michigan. Ensuring a public platform in which these communities had opportunities to tell their own stories was one of Elspeth’s most satisfying aspects of her work.

She is a “dyed-in-the-wool” Democrat, a third generation American whose grandparents experienced the hardships of war, genocide and poverty. Without the aid of U.S. government programs afforded her grandparents, and her parents’ hard work, she may not have enjoyed the opportunities for a good education, healthcare and employment that she has been fortunate to have.

Elspeth is committed to working for humanitarian, democratic and Democratic ideals that are grounded in equity and compassion for all people and for good stewardship of the earth.

Michael Fields - Region 12 Vice Chair

Clare, Gladwin, Osceola, Roscommon, Ogemaw and Arenac Counties

miruralcaucus@gmail.com

Michael retired from Au Gres-Sims Schools after 25 years of service as an elementary teacher. Michael spent 23 years as the local MEA chair at Au Gres and 10 years as a Coordinating Chair of District 12. Currently he is the chair of Gladwin County Democratic Party where he has been living with his wife Cathryn since 2016.

Larry Jackson - Region 13 Vice Chair

Ottawa, Allegan, Van Buren and Kalamazoo Counties

larryjack226@gmail.com

I came to West Michigan by way of Chicago (and my wonderful wife) and have worked in public service most of my adult life. As a military veteran, firefighter and currently the Chair of the Ottawa County Democratic Party. We serve our rural communities which make up about a 3rd of Ottawa County and we need to thrive together. My goal while working on the rural caucus is to better understand the challenges statewide so I can help the communities we serve.

Open - Region 14 Vice Chair

Berrien, Cass, St. Joseph and Branch

miruralcaucus@gmail.com
This position is currently open. Interested? Contact miruralcaucus@gmail.com

Kristine Squiers - Region 15 Vice Chair

Calhoun, Jackson, Hillsdale, Lenawee and Monroe Counties

miruralcaucus@gmail.com

Hello my name is Kristine Squiers and I have a Master of Science in Psychology specializing in Industrial Organizational Psychology, a Graduate Certificate in Business Management, and a Graduate Certificate in Diversity Studies. I have lived in rural areas of Michigan much of my life.

I am the mother of an adult son with Asperger's Syndrome, a form of autism spectrum disorder, who is also a member of the MDP. During his childhood I was a single mother working in the construction industry for the flexibility of being self-employed through a contractor. I managed my son’s behavioral disorders, medications, appointments, and school IEP’s. Eventually, I withdrew him from school. I transitioned careers in 2008 back to marketing. I home schooled my son from fifth grade until he
graduated in 2016. He is a great success.

I am a small business owner, a self-employed digital marketing and social media expert, contracted out to a global company that serves healthcare providers. I have worked with a variety of industries over the years and have familiarity with industrial and agricultural markets as well as healthcare.

I have created a Certified Wildlife Habitat in my yard which provides food, water and shelter for wildlife. My entire half acre yard is in a small subdivision inspiring the neighborhood. This also includes a Monarch Way Station and a variety of blue bird houses.

I am a member of these organizations:

Michigan Alliance of Environmental and Outdoor Education
Michigan Audubon
Michigan Sierra Club
Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation
Arbor Day Foundation
National Wildlife Federation
JCDC

Curt Hamilton - Region 16 Vice Chair

Eaton, Ingham, Livingston, Clinton and Shiawassee Counties

miruralcaucus@gmail.com
Curt grew up in rural Washtenaw County on a small family farm that sold chicken eggs to the organic food store in Ann Arbor, way back in the 1970s. And the Ann Arbor police department would often buy a few of our German Shepard puppies for public service.

The isolation of dirt road living taught independence and responsibility. Curt’s dad always said that ‘when you borrow something from your neighbor always return it in better condition than when it was given to you’. This lesson applies to the earth that we live on for the short ‘borrowed’ time that we have been given here.

Sustainability and environmental protection are important, and Curt is involved with the Sierra Club Crossroads Group and with the Livingston County Democrats. Renewable energy (solar and wind) is important to grow in Michigan in order to maintain our healthy environment.

Curt currently lives in Howell Township, Livingston County.

Open - Region 17 Vice Chair

Genesee, Saginaw, Midland, and Bay Counties

miruralcaucus@gmail.com

This position is currently open. Interested? Please contact miruralcaucus@gmail.com

Joe Gutowski - Region 18 Vice Chair

St. Clair, Lapeer, Sanilac, Tuscola and HuronCounties

miruralcaucus@gmail.com

Joe Gutowski is 68 years old and has spent the last 23 years of his life living in Hadley Township in Lapeer County. He was born and raised in Livonia, Michigan, at the age of 16
he began serving an electrical apprenticeship, as did his father and his grandfather. He and his wife of 43 years moved to Los Angeles shortly after marrying in 1980, and they
returned to Michigan in 2000 so Joe could take a senior management position with the worldwide corporation where he worked the last 34 years of his career, he retired in 2019.

While attending Wayne State University, Joe interned between 1974 and 1976 as a legislative agent for Common Cause, and after Common Cause announced a pioneering effort on November 5th, 1975, to introduce more truth and honesty into political campaigning by setting a code of standards for presidential candidates, he was assigned to travel with presidential candidate Morris Udall to his campaign activities to monitor his campaign’s compliance in the 1976 Presidential Election.

Since retiring, Joe has spent a great deal of time advocating for his neighbors in disputes with utilities, he has brought and continues to bring high-speed internet to the residents of Lapeer County, and personally provides aid to elderly members of his community.

Joe decided to join the Michigan Democratic Party Rural Caucus to provide assistance where needed to the many rural Democratic Party officials who work tirelessly every day
to bring meaningful change to the residents of rural Michigan.

Brian Jaye- Region 19 Vice Chair

Washtenaw, Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb Counties

bjaye@umich.edu

Mr. Jaye has been actively working on Statewide Democratic Campaigns since 2004. Finally Mr. Jaye served as a Judicial Intern (unpaid law clerk) to the former Chief Justice of the Michigan Supreme Court, a very prestigious position to attain. Mr. Jaye also worked on several high level political campaigns including David Leyton for Attorney General, Gary Peters for US Congress, and Debbie Stabenow for U.S. Senate.

In 2020, Mr. Jaye worked on the United States Presidential Campaign of U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders, got elected as a Democratic Delegate in his county, and was elected to the executive committee of the Oakland County Democratic Party. He attempted a Statewide Nomination with the Michigan Democratic Party for the State Board of Education. He was also the Democratic Nominee for United States Congress in Michigan's 9th Congressional District in 2022 against Lisa McClain.