Marko Sukovic, a 22-year-old Lincolnshire resident set to graduate from the University of Illinois next year, announced Tuesday he will seek the Republican nomination for the state House 59th District seat currently held by outgoing Rep. Carol Sente.
Sukovic, a 2013 graduate of Stevenson High School, said in his announcement that he was motivated to run by Illinois' loss of young professionals to neighboring states.
"The statistics are troubling, and they show that Illinois is hemorrhaging," he said in his announcement. "Springfield has adopted a culture of complacency in the status quo, and that is not working for my peers or for families across the 59th District."
Sukovic said he supports term limits, government consolidation, and tax and regulatory reform.
"I'm optimistic that things can be turned around," he said. "However, in order to change the decisions being made in Springfield, we need to change the kinds of people we send there. We need to work hard and work smart."
Sukovic said he is a second-generation American whose paternal and maternal grandparents emigrated here from the former Yugoslavia, believing that education and hard work, when combined with opportunity, would yield a better life for themselves, their children and their children's children.
He said he has worked his way through college as a public relations consultant advising campaigns, nonprofits and businesses. He has served as political director for congressman Robert Dold and helped establish Turning Point USA, a national nonprofit organization that registers college students to vote, and advocates for free markets and fiscal conservatism.
Last week, Vernon Township Supervisor Daniel Didech announced he will run as a Democrat for the 59th District seat, which represents all or parts of Buffalo Grove, Vernon Hills, Deerfield, Lincolnshire, Mundelein, Wheeling, Gurnee and Mettawa.
Sente, a Democrat from Vernon Hills, announced in September that she would not seek re-election to the seat she's held since 2009.