Nathan Bech

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Nathan Bech
Profession: Property Management

United States Army OIF/OEF Veteran, Army Reservist

Residence: West Springfield, Massachusetts
Religion: Christian
Political Party: Republican

Nathan Bech (b. 1974, Springfield, Massachusetts)[1] is the Republican Party candidate for State Representative in the 6th Hampden District of Massachusetts which includes all of West Springfield, Wards 2A, 3A, and 4A in Chicopee, and Ward 2E in Springfield.[2] This seat is currently held by Michael Finn[3] with the vote scheduled to take place November 4, 2014.[4]

Bech is a member of the Rotary Club of West Springfield.[5] He is a volunteer at the Hampden County House of Corrections in Ludlow, Massachusetts. He is also a member of Cottage Hill Church in Springfield, Massachusetts.

In 2013, Bech successfully organized a campaign in his hometown of West Springfield, Massachusetts to prevent the establishment of a gambling casino there by the Hard Rock Corporation.[6] Though vastly outspent, Bech’s grass roots campaign was successful with 55% of voters voting ‘No’.[7] He continues to be active with the statewide effort to Repeal the Casino Deal in Massachusetts which will be voted on by Massachusetts voters on November 4, 2014.

Bech was the 2008 Republican Party candidate for U.S. Congress from Massachusetts's 1st congressional district. The seat is currently held by Rep. John W. Olver, an Amherst Democrat.[8] Bech is one of eighteen Iraq War veterans who ran for congress in 2008.

Early life[edit]

Bech grew up in the predominantly Hispanic North End of Springfield, Massachusetts. His family moved to West Springfield when Bech was ten years old. Bech completed the requirements for a high school diploma in three years and spent his fourth year of high school studying in India as a Rotary Youth Exchange Student. Bech graduated from West Springfield High School in 1992. He is a graduate of Colgate University where he earned a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science in 1999.[1]

Military career[edit]

Bech joined the U.S. Army Reserve two days before his eighteenth birthday. It was in the military that Bech learned Russian, mostly at the Defense Language Institute. After ten years of combined service in the Army Reserves and the Massachusetts Army National Guard, Bech was selected for and graduated from the Officer Candidate School and continued to serve in the Army National Guard in both reserve and active duty capacities. His first of fours deployments was to Afghanistan in Operation Enduring Freedom as a member of the 10th Mountain Division,[1] working with tribes along the Pakistan-Afghanistan border.

After his return to the United States from Afghanistan, Bech volunteered to serve in Iraq. Due to his Russian language skills, he was deployed as liaison to the 13th Shavnaba Battalion of the Republic of Georgia.[1] The Republic of Georgia's Ministry of Defence made Bech an honorary member of that battalion for his work with Georgian troops in Iraq. He has continued to pursue his interest in the Middle East through study at the University of Massachusetts - Amherst and through study in the region itself.

Bech later returned to the US Army Reserves and deployed to Afghanistan again. He served as a Civil Affairs Team Chief in Kandahar. He and his team members oversaw project development in coordination with Kandahar city officials and USAID representatives in order to promote the legitimacy of the US-backed Afghan government there. Bech’s projects included the successful construction of a Nursing and Midwifery Institute for the Afghan Ministry of Health with the goal of training midwives in order to reduce the high Afghan death rate of women and children during childbirth. Bech’s fourth deployment was to Djibouti, Africa. There he oversaw project development by Civil Affairs Teams throughout many countries in the Horn of Africa.

Campaign for State Representative[edit]

Bech’s motto is “Putting People First.” He describes his campaign and political efforts as an approach "to put the interests of voters and tax-payers ahead of party politics." His stated goals are "to defend families and small businesses from runaway taxation and legislation that favors Boston insiders rather than the people who elected them." His political priorities include; "eliminating waste in the state budget, reducing unemployment, strengthening public safety, improving healthcare and education, and returning integrity to the State House."[9]