State Senator Jason Barickman (R-Bloomington) released the following statement announcing his retirement from the Illinois Senate.
“I have chosen to retire from the Illinois Senate, effective at the end of my current term, which expires on January 10, 2023.
“I have now served in the Illinois House and Senate for twelve years. My oldest son was born during the final days of my first legislative session, which quickly taught me about the sacrifices that would burden my family as I chose to serve. Those who know me are well aware of the priority I have continually attempted to place on my family. However, my other obligations have only increased, bringing further sacrifices. Throughout my time in the legislature, I have also had the honor to work as a full-time attorney, an adjunct college professor, and more recently as a partner in a real estate company that has grown much faster than I could have hoped for.
“Kristin and I have been blessed with a growing family, and our children deserve more of my time, attention, and involvement. My children are at special ages when parental involvement is critical, and I owe them my best attempt to make them the priority they deserve to be. However, for too long, Kristin and our kids (Augie, 11; Wally, 9; and Lia, 5) have tolerated a father who has had more obligations than time. I want to now give them more of me and am looking forward to getting more of them. My mom, dad and brother have also supported me at every turn. Now is a chance for me to give them more of my time as well.
“At the same time, the wonderful people of the 53rd Senate District need a representative who can make them the priority they deserve to be. Representing central Illinois, first in the House and then in the Senate, has been an incredible honor and privilege which I have never taken for granted. During my time in office, I have had the opportunity to play a role in historic changes in our state. My passion has been to serve as an independent voice in favor of limited and responsible governance for our State. I’ve tried to demonstrate that there is space for independent and thoughtful representation, even in our increasingly polarized political climate. Solving problems legislatively, and just as importantly, working to address constituent issues, has given me an opportunity to prove that our government, as frustrating as it can be, can actually still work.
“Throughout my career in public service, Kristin and I have met countless individuals who have become and will remain our closest friends. I am especially grateful to my colleagues in the Senate, and to the incomparable staff on whom we all rely. Kristin and I will be forever blessed by the kindness and friendship shown by far too many people to name here.
“What's next for me includes more time with my kids - fishing, outdoor activities, traveling, participating in their activities, shuttling them around, and hopefully avoiding many of the phone calls, meetings and conflicts that have too often pulled me away from my family.
“I am announcing my retirement now to give the Republican Party leadership in my district time to fill this vacancy so that a new Senator can be seated at the inauguration of the new 103rd General Assembly in January 2023. I am very excited for this next chapter of my life to begin, and I wish nothing but success for the next Senator to represent the 53rd District. May God bless Illinois.”