Susan Bangert is a lifelong Democrat who has worked on many campaigns. In high school she volunteered for Jean Lloyd Smith, who was running against a young Terry Branstad for the state house. Since then she’s been active in the Democratic Party in Kossuth County, attending precinct caucuses, working at the fair booth, knocking on doors and making phone calls. She was the county chairperson for Roxanne Conlin when she ran for governor the first time, and was a volunteer for the Obama campaign.
Susan is 53 years old , was born and raised in Forest City, Iowa, and has lived in Iowa all of her life. She graduated from the University of Iowa in 1979, with a degree in speech pathology. She received her master’s degree in speech pathology from Truman State University in Kirksville, Missouri in December the following year. She and her husband took their first jobs in Algona, Iowa, in January 1981, and have been there ever since. Susan is a speech language pathologist working for AEA 8, and her husband, Kevin Bangert, is the police chief in Algona.
Susan and Kevin have been married for 31 years. They have three children and one granddaughter. Their oldest daughter, Nicole Geving, is married to Jason Geving and along with their daughter, Lillian, live in Stewartville, Minnesota. Their son, Scott, is engaged to be married this summer, and lives in Waterloo, IA, where he works for an insurance company. Their youngest, daughter, Katie, is a senior at University of Northern Iowa, graduating this summer with a degree in communication disorders. She has been accepted to graduate school at UNI and will start her studies this fall to become a speech pathologist.
Susan worked for Lakeland AEA 3 for twenty two years. When the two AEAs consolidated, she struck out on her own, opening and operating Great Minds Learning Center in Algona for three years. She was offered the opportunity to work for AEA 8, and hasaccepted worked there for four years. Susan finds her work to be very interesting and challenging, and plans on continuing her work there when the legislature is not in session.
Susan’s story is an example of the American dream. She was raised in a large family (8 brothers and sisters) without much money, but was able to attend college, on scholarships and with government grants and loans. All of her brothers and all but one of her sisters are college graduates, and that sister is a successful entrepreneur/businesswoman.
When my father became disabled when Susan was in high school, he was able to continue to provide for his family, thanks to Social Security disability funds. He was a proud man and Susan will be forever grateful for our wonderfulAmerican system that enabled him to keep his dignity and not have to depend on charity or handouts to pay the bills. He served in Italy in WWII, helping his country when they needed him and that country stood by him, when his health gave out.
Susan is a deeply patriotic person who is grateful for her country and wants to contribute to its greatness. She has been distressed by the terrible partisan behavior that has appeared in politics lately and hopes to work with Republicans and Democrats alike to keep Iowa a wonderful place to live and work. She hopes to live up to Delores Mertz’ fine work in the House – those will be big shoes to fill!