DES MOINES, Iowa – Matt Pries of Grimes announced his campaign for the Democratic nomination in Iowa Senate District 23, representing Grimes, Polk City, Bondurant, and other communities in Polk and Dallas Counties. Should he win the nomination, Pries will challenge Iowa Senate Majority Leader Jack Whitver, R-Ankeny, who announced he is moving into the newly drawn district.
“I am running for State Senate because we deserve an advocate for hardworking Iowans and their families,” Pries said. “Serving others is something to which we are all called, and I am excited to be answering that call to run for State Senate. I am committed to unity, bipartisanship, and problem solving. I want to make our state a happier, healthier place for all people.”
Pries and his wife of 20 years, Heidi, and two sons, Owen and Alex, have lived in Grimes since 2006. Matt and his family are members of St. Peter Lutheran Church in Grimes where he has led children’s music and Vacation Bible School. He has also served as chair of the Transition Task Force, a member of the Call Committee, a member of the choir, an assisting minister, lector, and usher/greeter.
“We have sat behind Matt and his family in church for many years and watched his passion and energy grow for teaching, coaching, and serving people,” said Dave Eilers, former Dallas Center-Grimes school board member, and Carol Eilers, a local church leader. “He has an amazing gift of using his words to connect with and inspire people – young children during Sunday School music, coaching and teaching high school students, and adults of all ages through his service. We are excited to help Matt in his endeavor to represent us in the Iowa Senate.”
Pries earned his BA at Wartburg College in 1995, graduating Summa Cum Laude, and went on to earn a Master of Arts in Education from the University of Northern Iowa in 2004. He has taught English and been a Literacy Interventionist at Waukee High School for the past 16 years; he has also advised a service group, Random Acts of Kindness. Pries is also an assistant girls track and field coach at Waukee Northwest High School and head boys cross country coach at Dallas Center-Grimes High School. As a coach, he has been part of eight girls track and field state titles at Waukee, two as head coach, and has led DCG to three straight state cross country titles.
“We need new policies to address the state’s workforce crisis. Our district deserves a true advocate for public education and mental health. I will be a voice for diversity, striving to ensure all people have access to services they need, and stand for responsible use of our resources. We must become a leader in sustainability and demonstrate concern for future generations,” Pries added.