New lawmaker headed to Ed Committee

Boise’s legislative District 18 has a new House member.

And that means the House Education Committee may be back to full strength.

Ilana rubel
Ilana Rubel

On Wednesday, Gov. Butch Otter appointed Ilana Rubel to the House. As we reported Tuesday, the Boise attorney was District 18 Democrats’ top choice to succeed Janie Ward-Engelking.

Until her Dec. 20 appointment to succeed Branden Durst in the state Senate, Ward-Engelking was one of three Democrats on the House Education Committee. During Wednesday’s inaugural committee meeting, Gooding Democratic Rep. Donna Pence said the appointee would wind up taking Ward-Engelking’s place on House Education.

Here is Otter’s news release on the appointment:

Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter announced the appointment today of Boise attorney Ilana Rubel to the Idaho House of Representatives. She fills a District 18 vacancy created when then-Representative Janie Ward-Engelking was appointed to the Idaho Senate.

Rubel was among three candidates nominated by the District 18 Democratic Legislative Committee to succeed Ward-Engelking, whom Governor Otter appointed on December 20 to the seat left open by the resignation of Senator Branden Durst.

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“I am very grateful to have this opportunity to work with my fellow legislators on both sides of the aisle to help bring top-quality jobs to our state, make our schools the best they can be, and protect Idaho’s natural resources for generations to come,” Rubel said.

Rubel, 41, has lived in Boise for 14 years and is a litigation partner at the law firm Fenwick & West in Boise. She is a Georgetown University and Harvard Law School graduate. She and her husband, attorney John Paschke, have four children.