Katie Hobbs has represented the 15th district as a member of the Arizona House of Representatives, and is currently a Senator in district 24. Before taking her career in a political direction, Katie was a social worker by trade, and has a long history of community service. “My dedication to serving my community and its members started when I was just a student. I even met my husband, Patrick, when we were both volunteering at a Catholic parish,” Katie said. “Our mutual commitment to helping others has been a great bond throughout our relationship. Patrick and I have always supported each other, and have encouraged each other to always give back to our fellow Arizonans.”
Katie and Patrick were married 17 years ago, and have cited their service-minded nature as a pillar in their relationship and their inspiration for building their family together. They are raising two children that are 15 and 11. As parents, there’s nothing more important to Katie and Patrick than instilling their values of acceptance and encouraging their kids to be their true selves.“I think as parents, everyone just wants their kids to be happy – that might look different to different people. But definitely, for us, that means unconditional acceptance. They know that who they love doesn’t matter, and that is how we chose to raise them,” Katie said.
Katie and Patrick also have made a point to raise their children to understand the importance of the golden rule–to treat others as you’d wish to be treated. And that includes same-sex couples and their families. While the protections of marriage are clear to Katie now, it wasn’t always that way. “When Patrick and I started dating, I knew that we would get married. I never thought – I don’t think either of us did – about the hundreds of benefits that we would get by having that legal piece of paper. It just wasn’t even on our radar,” Katie said. “Patrick and I didn’t realize how lucky we were to be able to make our love and commitment official in our home state. For same-sex couples, this is not the case.”
Same-sex couples cannot marry in Arizona, which means thousands of families across the state are denied critical protections and respect. And as a mom, Katie says treating gay and lesbian couples as second-class just isn’t in line with the values that define Arizona. Aside from having their love treated as second class, same-sex couples are unable to access the protections only marriage can provide. “Marriage provides stability – for the partners, for their families, and for the community. There are so many legal issues that are resolved because of marriage: hospital visitation, estate settlement, legal guardianship, and many others. People in committed relationships shouldn’t have to worry about these things. Children of same-sex parents shouldn’t have to wonder about these things,” Katie said. “All of Arizona’s families deserve respect and dignity.”
Katie is using her position as a State Senator to move marriage forward in Arizona. “I think talking about why marriage matters to all families is essential to moving the conversation forward. We must educate Arizona about how marriage inequality is hurting our communities,” Katie said. “I am dedicated to supporting Why Marriage Matters Arizona, and our efforts to help bring marriage protections to all families in our great state.”