As we are down to the last few months before the primary, it is time to restate our intentions, summarize the positions that we have covered, and provide some personal background before the last important votes are cast.
I appreciate any time that you have spent reviewing my positions and the consideration of your vote. I believe if you have spent time on my website, or read through some of my posts, that I have provided strong evidence that I am the best candidate for this district.
I would like to thank my family for helping me through this process. I have a wonderful wife, Yvonne, who has always supported me. She began her career at Washington Natural Gas where she worked for 7 years before moving into social work where she has spent the last 22 years working to protect children throughout Washington. She has always been a terrific mother and wife and kept our household running.
I also have two great sons, Tommy and Scott, who started working for the Federal Government and Amazon after graduating from college and law school. They both played college baseball and grew up pouring many hours onto ball fields around this state. Traveling to hundreds of games was a great way to explore the communities, cities, and people our beautiful state offers. Scott is also an avid salmon and steelhead fisherman who has spent countless hours on the Clark, Cowlitz, Skagit and Snohomish County rivers, and exploring the treasures they offer. My family has formed a strong connection to our area and it is very important to us to work hard to protect and foster its growth.
I would also like to provide you with some of my personal family background. For most of you, I could be perceived as an immigrant from a faraway land, as truthfully I am. I immigrated to the United States from Poland in 1984, when President Ronald Reagan was running for his second term, and I have been a Washingtonian for the past 34 years. I feel as much a part of our community after so many years of residing here as most of you are. I deeply care about this land, its people, and our future.
I come from a rather modest upbringing. I grew up on a small farm ran by my grandmother. My mother was a teacher and my father was an auditor for an agricultural company. Unfortunately, during WWII in 1940, my mother and her family were sent to the Russian Gulags in Kazakhstan when my mother was six years old. She spent the next six years of her life there before the whole family was forcefully migrated to the newly-acquired former German territories of Pomerania. While still in the Gulag, my mother’s brother died as a toddler. My grandmother worked in a gold mine and while my grandfather and his two brothers fought alongside the British Army in Northern Africa and Italy, before being resettled in England. After my grandfather returned to Poland in 1948, he and his whole family were observed and persecuted for their views by the communist government.
My father died in an accident when I was only four years old and my mother became a young widow with three little brats to take care of. (Thank you for everything, Mother.) By the grace of God I was always a gifted student and I competed in knowledge competitions in elementary and high school. I also played soccer, ran cross-country, rode bicycles, and swam. While I studied economics and business management, I competed and won the nationwide university knowledge competition in Poland. A few of my economics professors told me I should be working on Wall Street, which of course was impossible under the Russian-dominated socialist government in Poland at that time. I was also active in organizing the first independent political party in Poland. After graduating from the university, I started working as an Assistant Professor of Political Science. Unfortunately, due to increased persecution and oppression of the opposition movement, my wife and I decided to leave our motherland and look for more liberties and freedoms in the United States. You already know the rest of the story.