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53rd Senate District GOP primary gets crowded, as farmer and ag teacher Jesse Faber enters the race

There are now four announced Republican candidates for State Senate in the 53rd District.

Jesse Faber is the latest to announce a run in the 53rd District, a largely red district that includes parts of 13 Illinois counties, including McLean, Peoria and Tazewell. The winner will fill the seat now held by Tom Bennett and previously by Jason Barickman of Bloomington. Bennett declined to run again.

Faber farms and teaches high school agriculture in Pontiac.

Jesse Faber of Pontiac is the fourth candidate to announce a run for the 53rd State Senate district Republican Primary in 2024.
Jesse Faber
Jesse Faber of Pontiac is the fourth candidate to announce a run for the 53rd State Senate district in the Republican primary in 2024.

“Combining my experience in agribusiness and good public policy with my passion for teaching, coaching, and mentoring our next generation of leaders has given me a unique perspective on what our state needs as we move forward,” said Faber.

Faber has had lengthy service on the Livingston County Farm Bureau board. He has been president of the Illinois Association of Vocational Agriculture Teachers, a 4-H leader, and a member of U.S. Rep. Darin LaHood’s Agriculture Advisory Council. He has chaired the Illinois Agriculture Education Legislative Committee.

“Bringing my personal experience forward to shape ag education policies later implemented at the state level has been rewarding,” said Faber, adding he working on a doctoral degree in ag education.

He called for lower taxes, law and order, and fiscally conservative policies. Faber termed himself a strong supporter of the Second Amendment and against abortion.

Faber joins Livingston County farmer Mike Kirkton, Washington Mayor Gary Manier, and Grundy County Board chair Chris Balkema in the GOP primary. The primary election is March 19, 2024.

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WGLT Senior Reporter Charlie Schlenker has spent more than three award-winning decades in radio. He lives in Normal with his family.
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