ABOUT MARA CANDELARIA REARDON
Mara Candelaria Reardon was born in East Chicago. Her father, Isabelino “Cande” Candelaria, was the first Puerto Rican appointed to City Council in Indiana. Her mother, Victoria Soto Candelaria, was the first Latina elected as President of the Indiana Federation of Teachers.
Mara graduated from Munster High School, and then earned her BA from Indiana University Northwest and attended the John Marshall School of Law in Chicago. She has devoted her life to public service, like her parents. She started by working for Congressman Pete Visclosky as a Federal Projects Coordinator.
Mara continued her public service through organizations like the Lake County Drug-Free Alliance, the Hispanic/Latino Affairs Commission, and the Minority and Women’s Business Enterprise Commission. In 2006, she became the first Latina elected to the Indiana House of Representatives In 2019, Mara was elected by her peers, as Chair of the Indiana House Democrat Caucus, a historic Caucus that is for the first time in Indiana’s history, a majority women caucus.
In office, Mara has served on the Roads and Transportation Committee and the Utilities, Energy, and Telecommunication Committee. She is the current Indiana House Democratic Caucus Chair. Throughout her tenure, Mara has specialized on fiscal and budgetary matters serving 10 years on the Way and Means Committee, later joining the Roads and Transportation Committee along with the Energy and Telecommunications Committee. Mara has been a strong advocate for unions, public education, healthcare, and ensuring women and Latinos are represented in politics.
Mara and her husband, Matt, live in Munster with their two teenage children.