Nicole Hasso's story began on the South Side of Chicago, in a neighborhood just a five-hour drive from Des Moines. It might as well have been a world away. Raised in poverty, she grew up with a front-row seat to the sense of hopelessness that plagued her community and its devastating symptoms. Nicole witnessed a neighborhood broken by crime, drug and alcohol abuse, and gang violence. She saw the patterns of unemployment and dependency, teenage pregnancy, abortion, and family instability. Growing up in that environment, Nicole refused to become a statistic.
Even as she watched the vicious cycles of poverty, substance abuse and fatherlessness consume neighbors, relatives, friends, and even her own mother, she knew that God had a bigger plan for her life. She chose a different path, and it brought her to Iowa.
Nicole worked hard and became the first member of her family to graduate from high school, and then the first to attend college. At Drake University in Des Moines, she found success in the classroom and met the love of her life, Mitch Hasso, a student at Iowa State. All the while, she never forgot where she came from and she never gave up on her family. When her grandmother was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, she returned to Chicago to care for her. She tried to get her mother out of the throes of drug addiction and poverty.
After two years in Chicago, Nicole knew it was time to return to Des Moines with a mission: She wanted to help others raise themselves above their circumstances, just as she was. She married Mitch and had two kids. Drawn to financial services as a way to help people achieve prosperity, Nicole became one of the top internal wholesalers at Principal Financial Group. Even a home fire in 2011 that devastated everything the Hassos had worked for couldn’t deter her—they put their faith in God and re-built their home and their life. She’s active in her church, teaching classes, leading prayer groups, and helping with youth ministry.
Nicole Hasso has spent her life defying the odds. Her story is proof that your ZIP code doesn't have to define your destiny, and that in America, anything is possible if you're willing to work.
When a pervasive, radical ideology that preached the exact opposite appeared in her kids' classrooms, Nicole knew she had to fight back. Nicole refused to accept any ideology that teaches that skin color renders some people oppressors and others the oppressed. She stood up against the 1619 Project that distorts American history to fit this cruel narrative as this curriculum started making inroads in Iowa schools. Nicole took on her local board of education to oppose this radical dogma in Iowa classrooms, and she refused to back down. Nicole is also a part of "Embrace Grace,” and outreach program for young pregnant girls who need someone to walk their journey with them.
That's Nicole Hasso. Facing down challenging circumstances, defying long odds, giving back to others, and doing what's right, no matter how hard—it's how she's achieved the American Dream, and it's how she'll represent us in Congress. Nicole knows socialist welfare policies work against the communities they purport to help, and the importance of the dignity of work. She fought to escape the wreckage of decades of failed liberal policies: abortion on demand, the disarming of the defenseless, the demonization of police, government handouts that deny the dignity of work, and the soft bigotry of low expectations.
Now, just like she did so many years ago, Nicole Hasso is fighting for a different path forward for Iowa, and for America.