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John Kooiker
John Kooiker - Official Portrait - 86th GA.jpg
86th General Assembly portrait (2015)
Member of the Iowa House of Representatives
In office
January 12, 2015 – January 8, 2017
Preceded by Dwayne Alons
Succeeded by Skyler Wheeler
Personal details
Born June 28, 1946(1946-06-28) (age 73)
Sioux County, Iowa, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Sherry Kooiker (m. 1971)
Children Sam
Residence Boyden, Iowa
Occupation Teacher, Farmer

John J. Kooiker (born June 28, 1946) is an American politician who represented Iowa's Fourth District in the state House of Representatives from 2015 to 2017.

Early life and careerEdit

Kooiker is one of seven children born to John and Johanna Kooiker (née Vermeer).[1] He graduated from Western Christian High School in 1964, as class valedictorian.[2] He attended Calvin College, then Kansas State University, where he earned a masters in Math Education and a Ph.D.[3][4] Kooiker served in the United States Army during the Vietnam War.[5] He left the army and began teaching math and physics at the Christian Academy in Japan in 1972.[6] Kooiker returned to the United States in 1975, moving to Boyden, Iowa. He worked for the United States Postal Service as a letter carrier from 1977 to 2005.[3]

Political careerEdit

Kooiker defeated Democrat John Bunstma and write-in candidate Dennis Wright, a former mayor of Hull, Iowa,[7] in the special election called on January 6, 2015, after the November 2014 death of Dwayne Alons.[8] He serves on the Labor, Local Government, Public Safety, and Veteran Affairs committees and co-chairs the Transportation, Infrastructure, and Capitals Appropriations Subcommittee.[9] In October 2015, Kooiker stated that he would not seek a second term.[10] He endorsed Skyler Wheeler, who won the Republican primary for the Fourth District in June 2016.[11][12]


He and his wife Sherry have four children.[3] One of his sons, Sam first ran for the mayoralty of Rapid City, South Dakota in 2007, but lost. He ran again and won the office in 2011, serving until 2015. A daughter died of cancer in October 2007.[13]


  1. "Kooiker, Johanna (Mrs. John) 1908-1993". Sioux County Index. September 9, 1993. Retrieved January 18, 2015. 
  2. "John J. Kooiker Plans to Study Chemistry at Calvin". Sioux County Index. July 2, 1964. p. 1. Retrieved January 17, 2015. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Hall, Jacob (December 19, 2014). "Kooiker gets GOP nod for HD 4". The Iowa Statesmen. Retrieved January 10, 2015. 
  4. De Wit, June (December 31, 2014). "Kooiker Buntsma vying for state". Sioux County Index Reporter. p. 2. Retrieved January 18, 2017. 
  5. McLaughlin, John Lee (January 8, 2015). "Rapid City mayor's dad elected to Iowa Legislature". Retrieved January 11, 2015. 
  6. "[No title"]. Sioux County Index. September 21, 1972. p. 11. Retrieved July 2, 2015. 
  7. Hayworth, Bret (January 8, 2015). "Kooiker takes on Iowa House District 4 position". Sioux City Journal. Retrieved January 11, 2015. 
  8. Murphy, Erin (January 6, 2015). "Kooiker wins easily in special Iowa House District 4 vote". Sioux City Journal. Retrieved January 8, 2015. 
  9. Eschliman, Bob (October 20, 2015). "Kooiker not seeking re-election in HD 4; Wheeler steps up". The Iowa Statesman. Retrieved December 5, 2015. 
  10. "Iowa Rep. John Kooiker says he will not seek re-election". Washington Times. October 19, 2015. Retrieved December 5, 2015. 
  11. Hayworth, Bret (May 25, 2016). "3 Sioux County Republicans aim to advance out of primary". Sioux City Journal. Retrieved June 20, 2016. 
  12. Richardson, Ian (June 7, 2016). "Skyler Wheeler, 23, wins Iowa House District 4 GOP race". Sioux City Journal. Retrieved June 20, 2016. 
  13. "Obituaries for October 23, 2007". Rapid City Journal. October 23, 2007. Bonnie Lynn (Kooiker) Matulka. Retrieved January 10, 2015. 

External linksEdit

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