Class of 2020 Endorsed Candidate: Kim McCarthy
A few years ago Kim, an accountant, long time business owner and entrepreneur, saw the local county electoral ballot devoid of any meaningful choices and she began to focus more attention on things closer to home.
Kim proceeded to do just that, stepping up to support the real needs of the people of her community, running a highly organized campaign in 2018 that knocked on over 15,000 doors, taking the time and making the effort to listen and talk directly with people about the real issues they are facing, and the solutions they would like to see from their representatives. She then offered up proven economic policies to address those problems. And she is running again this year to continue this effort and finish off the job in support of the people of Greene County.
She is the proud mother of three children, and lives with them and their dog Boomer and cat Flipper, along with a hen house full of chickens and ducks, on Boomerang Farm in Sugarcreek Twp.
Meet the Candidate: Kim McCathry
1) In your interview with the Endorsement Committee, you shared a personal life experience that led you to the decision to run for office. Can you tell our members a little bit about your journey to filing as a candidate?
My journey to filing as a candidate probably started the day I immigrated to the United States from Australia. I experienced poverty and a lack of worker rights at a level I had never seen before. I knew that the wealthiest and most powerful country in the world could do better by its people. I started to become actively involved as a political activist 10 years ago, but I mostly worked on issues at the federal level. It wasn’t until the 2016 election, when I left the polling place so dejected over the lack of choices down ballot, that I decided to turn my attention to my own backyard.
I started attending the weekly County Commission meetings, and began to stand up and ask questions of their decisions. I encouraged others to join me, and from those efforts, formed a grassroots progressive group that continues to support candidates and local issues to this day. It was my experience at county government that helped me discover that it was the State Government who held the fate of our schools, our cities, our townships, in their hands. I saw a representative who wasn’t fighting for us, and decided that I could do that job better. Though the odds were against me, I ran for this seat in 2018 and received the most votes that a challenger had received for decades. I ran on the issues that people cared about, and the voters responded. I am running again in 2020 to build on that momentum, and finish off the job!
2) Many of you cited a family member whose strength was an inspiration to you. Tell our members about a friend or family member who inspired you to become a leader.
My mother taught me how to overcome challenges. She stood up and became a business leader at a time when women weren’t expected to do so. She overcame many personal challenges in her own life, and raised strong children, while running a successful business with my father. She showed me what resilience looks like, and I thank her every day for shaping me in a way that makes me unafraid to stand up for what I believe in.
3) Some of you are teachers, some businesspeople, some professionals, some homemakers. How has your career and life experiences shaped who you are as a person and a leader?
Running a small business for 20 years teaches you many skills – and it showed me that I can accomplish things I might not have dreamed possible. It teaches you empathy for others, through having employees, as well, and brings into sharp focus the challenges that many people face behind mostly closed doors. Being a mother to three wonderful children has also shaped me, and softened my edges where I needed it most.
4) The Matriots PAC has a goal to see 50% of all elected offices in Ohio held by women by 2028. What is your vision for Ohio in 2028?
I would like to see a more representative government in 2028, and with that, a government that has made families its priority. I want to see each and every Ohioan have access to health care, regardless of their wealth, and I want to see our schools be held up as the most important institution in the state. Jobs from companies that value and respect their employees would be available for all, and our environment would finally come before corporate profits.
5) Tip O’Neill famously said that “all politics is local.” What are the top-two issues your community or our state face today?
Our school funding formula has left our school districts on the edge of a financial cliff. We must fix the broken formula and begin to prioritize our children’s education by fully funding each school across the state.
Our local taxes have become a burden for the middle and working classes, so we must fix the underwater tax system in Ohio that allows the wealthiest Ohioans to not pay their fair share.
6) Now for fun: Tell us something personal about yourself. It can be a hobby, your favorite food or something we might not know about you that you would like to share with our members.
In the past few years, I have become a proud chicken and duck owner. I love watching them roam freely across my property from my covered front porch. The ducks especially are particularly engaging, and become quite loud and outspoken if not given the attention they demand! Their eggs are a source of food for our family, but more than that, they are a source of entertainment and enjoyment on a daily basis!