By Mark Belling, WISN-AM
The Democratic candidate for the state Assembly in the district that covers northern Racine County has used a different legal name for most of the past 18 years. The candidate, Anthony Hammes, changed his name in 2018 from Anthony Jacoby Mielcarek. The name change occurred shortly before Hammes/Mielcarek ran for public office in Racine. Hammes is actually his given last name. Hammes was born Kelly Hammes and was a female throughout her elementary and high school years. Kelly Hammes evidently changed gender identification in 2004 and legally changed name to Anthony Mielcarek in 2004. Court records indicate Anthony Mielcarek was the legal name from 2004 to 2018. That’s when the name was changed again to Anthony Hammes, reverting back to the original last name.
Hammes’ campaign website contains a brief biography of the candidate but none of it mentions anything about the name changes or former identity. There have been cases in the past where candidates changed their names in order to cover up trouble in their lives but there is no indication of any of that with Hammes.
Hammes is running as a Democrat in the district currently represented by Republican Robert Wittke. The district, which includes much of ultra-Republican Caledonia, is considered a safe GOP district.
Hammes’ website says he has been married for 15 years to local physician Dr. Diana Hansen. I have emailed Hammes with questions about the recent legal name change but have not received a response.
July 12, 2022