Former State Representative Gail Riecken Named City County Observer Statehouse Editor


There is a saying “What happens in Las Vegas, stays in Las Vegas”. Over the years that saying has often been true about politics discussed in Indy that affected us in Southwestern Indiana “what was discussed in Indy, didn’t always reach us”.

Our local elected state officials try to keep us informed but one representative or senator writing to his/her constituents does not necessarily give access to information outside that person’s district.

There has been information concerning current happenings at the Statehouse that we at CCO know of where some folks would have liked to know more, but getting the information was after-the-fact or too late to comment.

That is why we think the StatehouseFiles articles is going to be so important to you, our readers. It will give just one more perspective on an issue, another set of ears and eyes on subjects we care about, published in a timely manner and available to anyone who reads CCO.

But, we are not stopping there. We want to do more.

We have invited former State Representative Gail Riecken to help us. Riecken will make comments on a StatehouseFiles articles published in the CCO. Her charge is to provide unbiased opinions or answers on those StatehouseFiles articles.

Gail Riecken might offer some background to the issue or ask a question or it might be she will quote a legislator who has spoken out on the issue. Her goal will be, first, to encourage you to comment about the impact on our region.

Second, she will also help you find the right person in Indy, if you want to share your thoughts. Suppose you really care about a certain issue in a CCO StatehouseFiles feature article and want to contact someone about the subject. First contact, always, is your local legislator, but, second, well that may be where Riecken can help.

So, here is the process. If you want to make a comment on a CCO feature article from StatehouseFiles for everyone to read, respond to the CCO in the comment section as you have always done.

But if you want more information or additional help, let Gail Riecken know and she can point you in the right direction. Contact her at

It is our hope that the City County Observer and our newly appointed State house Community Editor Gail Riecken will be able to provide you with one more avenue toward sharing information to make this region an even better place to live.


Gail Riecken is a hometown girl with a career of servant leadership possessing an ingrained need to work with people and for people for the betterment of the community and region that she comes home to everyday.

As a young girl growing up in a household that encouraged volunteerism and public service, Gail Riecken, earned pocket money by babysitting and working as a camp counselor. Her German roots made their way to America like many through the gates of Ellis Island. The strength of Gail’s grandmother was tested early in her American life by having all of her possessions stolen shortly after immigrating and by losing her husband to a mining accident. That strength seems to have manifested itself in Gail who has risen from being a schoolgirl at Evansville’s Bosse High School to become a successful entrepreneur and eventually to the office of Indiana State Representative for District 77.

While other elected officials are hiding from their records Mrs. Riecken is standing proudly on hers. As a professional woman from a family that has seized opportunities, Gail believes that one of government’s highest duties is to assure that everyone has an opportunity to achieve whatever they aspire to. One of her mantras is “it is better to teach people to fish than it is to give them a fish”. She also recognizes that the current economy has created situations where many people are at risk through no fault of their own. This recognition led her to embrace the opportunity to effect legislation to help people to save their homes from foreclosure and to enhance neighborhoods by mitigating abandoned property issues. Another saying of Gail’s is that “when neighborhoods succeed, communities succeed”.

Gail’s community involvement resume is quite comprehensive and includes direct involvement with children’s welfare programs, women’s groups, the arts, family support initiatives, and environmental concerns. This community devotion is reflected in Gail’s legislative actions to reform the administration of Medicaid to increase transparency and accountability while preserving benefits, by advocating for new law for women owned and minority owned businesses (MBE & WBE) and by authoring a bill to add certain rights of child and “endangered adults”.



  1. This is a huge game changer. We can finally hear news directly from the source without any sort of partisan or liberal bias. I’m glad you selected a moderate person like Riecken.

  2. Terrific. CCO is glad to share who writes as its Statehouse Editor.
    Wonderful, talented professional.
    This online format is growing to become more of a professional journalistic source.

    Who is the CCO “Is It True?” Editor(s)?

    • S. Schaefer

      IS IT TRUE is written by roughly 63 contributors comprised of private citizens and appointed and elected officials who have an interest in seeing greater Evansville adopt good public policy. The “CCO Moles” that are interested in helping the CCO get the word out about actions and policies that are in need of improvement also contribute. We have been doing this for about 15 years and it works well for us. Our policy has always been that we shall protect the names and identity of our “MOLES” and we shall continue to do that! The contributions are aggregated into each IS IT TRUE column by CCO staffers

      Thanks for reading the CCO

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