For this episode of The Caffeinated Thoughts Podcast, our host Shane Vander Hart talks to Jon Van Wyk. Van Wyk is a candidate running for the Republican nomination in Iowa House District 28 that is an open seat upon the retirement of State Representative Greg Heartsill (R-Chariton). It is a two-way contested primary. Van Wyk is running against Jon Thorup who was also invited to come on the podcast but declined due to his schedule (if that changes we will attempt to have him on before the June 5th primary).

Van Wyk grew up in rural Marion County between Pella and Oskaloosa. He graduated from Oskaloosa High School and later earned a Bachelors in Political Science and a Masters in Public Administration from Iowa State University. Van Wyk served as an infantryman in the Marine Corps Reserve and has worked in both the public and private sectors over the years. He currently co-owns a family winery in Sully.

He met his wife Svetlana in Chariton back in 1997 while she was a foreign exchange student from Russia. She returned to the United States to attend Grandview College in Des Moines, and later graduated from Iowa State. Van Wyk and Svetlana planted permanent roots next to the family winery in 2014. They have been married for 20 years and have three children. The Van Wyk family have attended Christ’s Church at Fox Creek in Waukee for the past ten years. They also were missionaries in Mexico, The Dominican Republic, and Venezuela.

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