Arizona Legislative District 29 includes part of Glendale, Litchfield Park and Maryvale.
The primary features all of the incumbents: Sen. Martín Quezada and representatives Richard C. Andrade and Cesar Chavez.
Quezada, who lives in Glendale, has no competition on the Democrat ballot. John Wilson of Phoenix is the lone Republican candidate on the District 29 Senate ballot.
Teddy Castro, a Litchfield Park resident, is the third Democrat on the District 29 House of Representatives ballot, joining Andrade and Chavez.
Three Republicans are on the District 29 House of Representatives primary ballot: Billy Bragg, Helen Fokszanskyj-Conti and Alysia McMillan.
The Glendale Star emailed the candidates about their backgrounds and priorities.
Quezada and Castro responded:
Please briefly describe your background, including any relevant education and work history.
Teddy Castro: I have a high school education and a couple of years of community college. I have been in the real estate profession for over 25-plus years with working in the corporate environment as a mortgage underwriter. I then catapulted in business as a real estate broker for over 17 years, helping families achieve home ownership to establish their first step towards wealth. I have lived in Wigwam Creek South for 17 years. I moved here because of the area and schools.
Martín Quezada: I was born and raised in the West Valley (Maryvale and Peoria) and I graduated from public schools (Peoria Unified School District, Glendale Community College, Arizona State University and the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at ASU). I worked for five years in the Arizona State Legislature as a research analyst for the Democratic caucus, and after law school I started a solo law practice. I recently moved to Glendale just north of the Maryvale community.
What are the three biggest issues of this local election?
Teddy Castro: Education. Employment and income growth. Affordable housing.
Martín Quezada: Finding a way to address the many needs of our community caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Addressing our epidemic of police violence. Finding a way to fully fund our public schools.
What experience do you have with managing spending?
Martín Quezada: I have served in the Legislature for the past nine years, where our most important votes are on our annual budget package. I have also served for the past 10 years on the Pendergast School Board, where our most important votes are on our district budget.
Teddy Castro: As a real estate broker and real estate business owner, I have to budget for office space, business services, marketing and everyday equipment. I also don’t get paid a regular salary. I get paid by commissions and incentives from other real estate agent commissions.
How do you define integrity?
Teddy Castro: Integrity is something you’re born with and instilled throughout your life to be honest, truthful and diligent with people.
Martín Quezada: I believe integrity is something that can’t necessarily be defined but is shown in actions. Someone who acts consistently with a moral compass and maintains loyalty to a set of values, regardless of the strong persuasions that try to distract them from those values.
Why should someone vote for you?
Martín Quezada: I have served this community for the past 10 years in elected office, and I am still improving and learning every day how to be a better servant of my community. My background and my successes have benefited this district already, and there is more to come in the future as I continue to be your strongest unapologetic progressive advocate for the values we all share and the policies we all deserve. You can learn more about specific policies at martinquezada.com
Teddy Castro: Over the past 25 years I have served my community in so many ways. Everything from grass roots movements, back-to-school drives, education, and serving on a number of nonprofit boards. I also understand and have lived the challenges the community faces till this very day. I’ve been and still am a small-business owner as a real estate broker with over 20 years experience. I’ve lived through different and difficult economies, from pre-9/11 to post-9/11, the housing market crash and now COVID-19, which have greatly affected affordable housing, homelessness and businesses within the community. I can speak from experience and understanding what it takes to navigate through these moments and overcome obstacles by putting in place legislation to protect the community during these times. It is now my time to serve my community at a higher level.