As the grand-daughter and daughter of Navy Veterans, Gretchen Driskell grew up learning that we have an obligation to give back to our community and that the most valuable things in life are always worth standing up for. These lessons are what’s driven Gretchen to spend her life working for family and community – and it’s why she’s running for Congress.
After starting her career in accounting, Gretchen moved to Saline, Michigan for the opportunities it could provide her family. As a young mother, she saw a need for a recreation center so that families like hers had a gathering place – so she helped lead the efforts to build the Saline Recreation Complex, which celebrated its 28th anniversary this past year.
The demands of raising her three children and supporting her family required more flexibility, and so Gretchen changed careers to become a commercial real estate agent – but her passion to help her community never wavered. She served on City Council for six years before becoming Saline’s first female Mayor.
During her 14 years as Mayor, Gretchen is proud to have passed 14 balanced budgets, to have Saline named one of the top 100 small cities in America three times, and to have prioritized and improved local schools. Most of all, she is proud that during her tenure she worked to attract new ventures to diversify Saline’s economy and to build Saline’s reputation as a place to do business.
In 2012, Gretchen seized an opportunity to do even more good for the community when she won a seat representing rural Washtenaw County in the Michigan House of Representatives. During her time in Lansing, she worked for better rural broadband access, to make sure that her community was at the top of the list for infrastructure improvements, and to make it easier for small businesses to access local capital.
Throughout her career, Gretchen has always felt that it was important to get out and hear from people where they live. That’s why during her time as State Representative she talked to voters every day and heard their stories by knocking on more than 25,000 doors.
Today Gretchen continues to live in Saline and is the proud mother of three children, Ryan, Matthew, a naval aviator, and Marielle and her granddaughters.