Noemí Ponce has called Kosciusko County her home for the past 32 years and is a current candidate for Kosciusko County Council At-Large. She isn’t your typical candidate, to say the least. Noemí comes from humble beginnings, of which she is proud, and continues to hit the ground running despite enduring various obstacles.
Noemí’s story begins with her parents, María and Cirilo Ponce. Despite only reaching the 4th and 6th grades respectively (due to poverty and the need to work) both immigrated to the United States from Mexico at the young age of 15, leaving behind their families. Maria and Cirilo have sacrificed so much and have worked tirelessly in order to provide a brighter future for their family. This hard work and dedication is what has, and continues to, inspire Noemi’s motivation to never stop fighting.
Noemí married at the young age of 19 and started her family during her first semester in college. Despite all odds, Noemí was able to finish her bachelor’s degree in Spanish Education after working relentlessly for 10 long years. During those years, Noemí endured hardships in her marriage. Eventually, Noemí made the most difficult decision to-date, and filed for divorce. She made this decision for her children. Her children have and continue to be her driving force. She has always been open about the abuse she faced in her marriage. It has always been her desire to help others simply by being transparent and sharing her story, in hopes of giving other women that same valor to stand up on their own 2 feet. Statistics like this make her aware of the need here at a local level to distribute funds to programs that help empower women to have the confidence to fight for their own happiness and well being. Noemí never gave up during these trials and was able to pursue her lifelong dream of becoming a teacher.
Noemi’s dream of becoming a teacher stems from the fact that her own parents were unable to finish their primary education; the core foundation for every child. Therefore, she realized how important obtaining an education would mean, to not only her parents, but all immigrants seeking the ultimate “American Dream.” In high school, Noemí began to realize the dire need for students such as herself to graduate from high school as she began researching Latino graduation rates. This impacted her to begin thinking about how she could possibly make a difference and was the reason she became a teacher herself. Each and every one of her students are her driving force. Any teacher can attest that all they want is to see their students succeed, and this begins with obtaining their high school diploma.
If elected to the Kosciusko County Council, Noemí will work to improve educational opportunities for ALL in our county by working to expand access to broadband internet to lower income families. The pandemic has shown us that lower income children lack necessary internet service across our county, which hinders their educational development. Noemí will work to make reliable, high-speed internet a reality for ALL in our county. Furthermore, Noemí wants to protect and expand programs such as Head Start, because she understands the importance of early education and the positive impact it has on students when they enter elementary school.
Noemí understands the value of hard work and perseverance. Without grit, nothing is achievable. Noemí has demonstrated that she embodies the definition of grit and is ready to put forth those efforts into her community as a County Council representative.