Media Contact: Maggie Turnbull

Madison, Wis – Dr. Margaret “Maggie” Turnbull has announced plans to run for Wisconsin’s governor as an independent candidate.

With a nod to her career as an astrobiologist, Turnbull’s campaign slogan is “Let Wisconsin Shine!”

“It’s a reference to our beautiful dark skies, our precious rivers and lakes and our vast human potential,” she said.

Turnbull and her running mate for Lieutenant Governor, Wil Losch of Rhinelander, are now collecting the 2,000 signatures needed by June 1 to place the pair on the ballot for the Nov. 6 general election. Losch is a high school teacher, hockey dad, and outdoor education innovator.

“I want to offer voters an independent option on the ballot this year as an alternative to the two party system driven by money and outside interests,” Turnbull said. “I’ll do whatever it takes to restore balance and sanity to our highest office.”

Although she now lives in Madison, Turnbull often returns to the northwoods, enjoying hunting, fishing, skiing, kayaking and a variety of other outdoor pursuits.

While she made her home base in Antigo, she helped develop the farm market and spearheaded a project tapping municipal maple trees. She also served as Ninth Ward alderman from 2009 to 2013. She now manages a large nationwide team of scientists to design and build spacecraft as part of NASA’s mission to search for planets and life beyond our Solar System.

“Working in our nation’s space program has given me the broad experience of tackling complicated tasks with diverse teams and communicating about this work to our federal representatives and the general public. Meanwhile, serving on the Antigo Common Council taught me about the unique challenges that small municipalities face, and how state policies can help or hinder our efforts to thrive, “ she said. “Small towns and rural areas have values that are different from the larger cities and I feel we need someone in the governor’s office who understands the entire picture, on large and small scales.”

Originally hailing from West Allis, the candidate is a 1993 Antigo High School graduate. She continued her studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, University of Arizona and Carnegie Institution of Washington, and is an authority on star systems which may have habitable planets, solar twins and planetary habitability.

She has received numerous honors, including being named Antigo High School Alumnus of the Year in 2007 and being cited as a “Genius” by CNN for her work cataloging stars most lively to develop planets that could support life and intelligent civilizations. The UW-Madison Alumni Park bears a quote from Turnbull on her thoughts about the human journey, saying, “We are not evolved to be pigeon-holed.”

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