First-generation American and human rights advocate Peter Kobak announced his bid for an At-Large Peoria City Council seat in the upcoming 2019 spring election.
In a campaign video released Wednesday, Kobak highlighted his aspirations for the future of Peoria.
“I’m a millennial Peorian who believes City Hall can and should set an aspirational vision for a community rooted in equity, human rights, civic engagement, and sustainability,” Kobak said. “Being a first-generation American whose parents escaped an oppressive government in Poland to build a life for themselves in the Midwest shaped my beliefs on the importance of community-informed government.”
Kobak worked on the City of Peoria’s Innovation Team, and said he has experience in different government sectors. He earned a master’s degree in human rights and democracy.
“I know so many proud Peorians working hard to improve their community, but there are also many who have given up hope for our city,” he said. “I see people leave, searching for opportunity elsewhere, and these aren’t just my friends and colleagues. Our city is shrinking in population, losing hundreds of people per year. I want to fight for a vision for the city that will improve the lives of those living here, keep Peorians here, and inspire pride in all of us; to make Peoria the best city it can be.”
His campaign video also highlights advocacy for criminal justice reform.
“Thousands of our neighbors are struggling to get by, but together we can ensure that a ZIP code does not predict someone’s future; the future of our city lies in our ability to ensure all Peorians can live happy, healthy lives, and that’s what is inspiring my run for City Council,” Kobak said.
Voters in the next city election — set for April 2019 — can expect to see a lot of familiar names on the ballot among candidates running for the five At-Large City Council seats.
Beth Akeson, Zach Oyler, Beth Jensen and Sid Ruckriegel have announced plans to seek re-election come April. At-Large City Councilman Eric Turner recently announced he will not seek another term.