Activist and retired businesswoman Jan Corn announced she is running for state representative in 16th Legislative District, hoping to fill the seat held by Rep. Skyler Rude, R-Walla Walla.

“The political scene in America has deteriorated so much in recent years,” Corn, a Democrat, said in a statement.

“I am running to show a different kind of leadership that is grounded in compassion and generosity, believing that everyone deserves the opportunity to succeed and have access to affordable housing, health care, childcare, a living wage, fair tax structure, personal choice and privacy.”

After redistricting, the 16th Legislative District includes Walla Walla County, about half of Benton County and a little of Franklin County.

Each legislative district is served by two representatives and a senator. In the 16th Legislative District, the incumbents are Rude, R-Walla Walla; Rep. Mark Klicker, R-Walla Walla; and Sen. Perry Dozier, R-Waitsburg. Both Rude and Klicker are running for reelection, and Dozier’s term runs through 2024.

In addition to her fiscal and policy priorities, Corn said she would work to preserve the ability to vote and to build trust in the fairness of the electoral system.

Corn was born and raised in Walla Walla. She is a graduate of Walla Walla High School and trained as a cosmetologist. She worked in the cosmetology industry for decades, including as a manager of a JCPenney salon and later as the owner of Walla Walla-based Impress Salon, which she ran for 22 years before retiring in 2021.

She has served on a long list of community boards, including the Walla Walla Chamber of Commerce, the Community Council, the advisory board for Walla Walla Community College Cosmetology, and the domestic violence prevention group The Network. She spent seven years as a board member of the Walla Walla Noon Rotary Club and served as president.

In addition, she has volunteered for years with the American Cancer Society and Walla Walla Community Hospice.

She is also the Democratic Party state committee member for Walla Walla County. She is a frequent advocate for various movements, and can often be seen at rallies and marches in Walla Walla.

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