Latham announces re-election bid to Iowa House

Shannon Latham, a Republican from Sheffield, has announced she will run for re-election to the new Iowa House District 55. Latham was elected in 2020 to Iowa House District 54 after Speaker Linda Upmeyer did not seek re-election.

“It is truly an honor to serve in the Iowa House. This privilege isn’t lost on me each time I walk through the doors of our beautiful state capitol building,” says Latham, whose interest in public service was sparked when she was a 4-H member and attended Citizenship Washington Focus (CWF).

Latham graduated from Iowa State University with a double major in Public Service & Administration in Agriculture and Agricultural Journalism with an emphasis in Public Relations. She also earned her MBA from the University of Iowa.

“I have enjoyed getting to know people across my district, so I could represent their needs and interests in the Iowa House,” said Latham. “Redistricting means I’ll have an opportunity to meet even more people in Franklin, Hamilton, northwest Story and southeast Wright Counties.”

Latham was appointed vice chair of the Appropriations Committee in her first term. She also serves on the Agriculture, Natural Resources and Information Technology Committees, as well as the Economic Development Budget Subcommittee. She was a strong public supporter during the 2021 session of H.F. 857, commonly called the Butchery Innovation Bill, which provides grants to businesses for projects relating to small-scale meat processing and licensed custom lockers.  She also advocated for childcare, and the Iowa House passed 10 related bills. Other milestone legislation passed in 2021 includes expanding broadband across Iowa; providing income tax cuts for every Iowan plus eliminating the death tax; and providing law enforcement with more tools to keep communities safe.

Latham and her husband, John, moved home to Franklin County in 2003 so they could raise their children, Ian and Elizabeth (Elle), near family and pursue the American dream. Shannon started her own public relations consulting business, and John founded Latham Hi-Tech Hybrids. Shannon soon joined him as co-owner of the family’s seed business.

“It felt risky to start my own business, but it paled in comparison to what I felt when John and I went into business together. There was no second income to fall back on, plus we were responsible for making payroll for our employees. It’s a responsibility we take seriously because people rely on these jobs to put food on the table and to pay their bills,” said Latham, who also has owned and operated Enchanted Acres pumpkin patch since 2012 in Sheffield.  “I commend entrepreneurs and small business owners for trading their paid time off and known salaries to follow their dreams. We need small businesses because they’re the backbone of our communities.”

To remain strong, Latham believes communities need strong educational systems and economic development efforts. She also believes an emphasis on trade schools and individualized learning programs that prepare graduates for careers are a win-win for students and business owners.

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