Farheen Hakeem - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

Farheen Hakeem

Farheen Hakeem, educator, leader, and community organizer, moved to Minneapolis in 1999. After September 11, 2001, Farheen joined the antiwar movement, spurred by the poor decisions of our government. At the same time, working as a teacher, she saw how resources from the local level were being drained, while corporate interests were being expanded. These two experiences challenged her to examine the ways that government fails the very communities it was created to serve.

Committed to making sure community voices are engaged in politics, she decided to "walk the talk" in 2005, and run for Mayor of Minneapolis. Farheen was the first Mayoral candidate endorsed by the Green Party, and secured 14% of the primary vote.

Although she was not voted into office, the campaign lifted her from a political noname to a viable political leader in just a few short months. Securing 14% as a thirdparty candidate also demonstrated the power of her grassroots organizing, as citizens put their support behind the candidate who offered a fresh message of community participation and government accountability.

Following the mayoral campaign, she heard from many supporters, who urged her to remain in the political discussion and run again. After assessing her skills and listening to community needs, Farheen announced her candidacy for Hennepin County Commissioner, District 4. After a strong campaign, Farheen earned almost 17,000 votes, which is 33% of the general vote, against a long-term Democratic Party machine candidate.

After living in the district for 8 years, and learning the current office holder was not returning for another term, Farheen saw the opportunity to have community voices recognized in state government, and so was the first to declare her candidacy for Minnesota State Representative, District 61B. But the DFL machine turned on, sending in over 1,000 volunteers to campaign against her in the last two weeks of the race. She again finished strong, with 30% of the vote.

Farheen was born and raised on the north side of Chicago, with her two brothers, from immigrant parents. Her parents were small business owners. She graduated from a public high school, and holds a Bachelor's degree in Mathematics from Oberlin College. Farheen is also a foster parent, and continues to volunteer as a youth leader for girls.

Info from Farheen Hakeem's website.

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