Rebecca Spears was born in Silvis, Ill., and raised on a farm outside of Preemption, Ill., until the age of 14, when her family was transferred and moved to a small town south of Kansas City, Mo. She attended Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, pursuing a bachelor’s degree in animal science. After marrying Robert Spears, the couple relocated to the Fort Smith, Ariz., area and Rebecca completed her animal science degree at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. She worked as a graduate assistant studying the parasites affecting livestock and completed field trials investigating drug efficacy in goats.
In the summer of 2006, Rebecca accepted the position of curator at Fejervary Children’s Zoo in Davenport, Iowa, and moved to Lowden. While curator, Rebecca redesigned the petting zoo, creating an Iowa Agricultural Exhibit. She also created new programming and increased the number of programs offered from six in 2006 to more than 30 in 2007. She had a hand in raising zoo attendance from just over 14,000 in 2006 to more than 22,000 visitors in 2007. She also implemented practices to reduce operating costs from the fiscal year prior to her hiring and operated the zoo within a previously established budget.
As a young, educated woman with two small children, Rebecca knows the importance of education, affordable health care and a community’s economic success. Having been involved in agriculture since childhood, she understands the issues affecting residents of District 79. Rebecca looks forward to serving her community at the state level.