I grew up in a town of 1000 — Wittenberg, Wisconsin, home of Nueske’s bacon. Living in a rural community, I appreciated how important it was to gain access to opportunities. My parents were hard-working public school teachers who taught me to work hard at a young age. I grew up pet-sitting, baby-sitting, and cleaning houses until I was old enough to work as a lifeguard and swim instructor in Wittenberg, Rothschild, and Weston. I always appreciated what Central Wisconsin had to offer. My mom would drive me to Stevens Point to take clarinet lessons at UWSP when I was in middle school, and I drove to Wausau every week for classes at UW-Marathon County at age 17.
I graduated from UW-Madison with a degree in political science and moved to Stevens Point to work at the Midwest Renewable Energy Association. Working to build solar training capacity in the Midwest by creating a network of solar instructors and installers was a dream come true, and I fell in love with the incredible community.
In 2011, Wisconsin state government changed radically with one-party rule, and I found myself complaining. Working families were losing opportunities while out-of-state billionaires wrote legislation that politicians passed.
My parents taught me an important lesson — don’t complain, they’d say, unless you’re going to do something about it.
So I did something about it. I ran for office to give a voice to everyone in Wisconsin who believes in fairness, opportunity, and community. People deserve a government that represents them and an economy that works for them instead of against them.
Since 2013, I’ve worked to represent the average Joe in the Assembly — whether you’re a millworker, a postal carrier, a construction worker, a student, a farmer, or a senior, I’m here to listen to your story and be your voice in Madison.
It’s an honor to represent you, and I take every vote I cast and every speech I make seriously. Thank you for the opportunity to serve you and our community.
In the legislature
Rep. Shankland serves on the legislature’s Joint Finance Committee, the 16-member budget committee responsible for the state’s biennial budget. She previously served as the Assistant Democratic Leader in the Assembly. In the 2017-18 legislative session, she was named Legislator of the Year by the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), Wisconsin Farmers Union, and the Wisconsin State Fire Chiefs Association.
Rep. Shankland believes in getting results, working across the aisle to pass commonsense legislation that benefits everyone. She authored and passed legislation to create a community paramedic program in Wisconsin, increasing access to affordable healthcare while creating jobs in rural communities. She also worked with both parties to change the law to help Skyward stay in Wisconsin when state law unfairly affected their business. She has been a vocal advocate to protect rural Portage County from Sexually Violent Persons (SVPs), cosponsoring legislation to stop SVPs being shipped to Central Wisconsin. Rep. Shankland also authored and passed legislation to help people with disabilities get access to long-term, meaningful employment.
At home in Portage County
Katrina and her fiance live in Stevens Point with their American bulldog, Stitch. They enjoy the Green Circle Trail, visiting the area’s breweries, distillery, and winery, attending community events and live music, and kayaking, hiking, and biking in the great outdoors.