Why I Am Running
I wanted to share a little bit about my background and where I come from. After growing up in a blue collar, union family in western Pennsylvania and becoming the first in my family to graduate from college, I moved to Ohio 34 years ago with a few hundred dollars and dreams of starting a family and launching a business. After we were married in October, my fiancé at the time, Tina, joined me. Tina and I first met in sixth grade, dated in high school, and I am happy to say we will be celebrating 34 years of marriage this October.
Over the next three decades I was blessed to raise three children with Tina, operate more than 60 businesses, create 1,500 jobs and employ over 3,000 people across our state. This poor guy from Western PA was able to live the American Dream right here in Ohio.
I’m basically just a business guy, and I assumed that I’d spend my entire life just running businesses, and I would have been happy to do so. But in 2009, the Obama Administration took over General Motors and shuttered dealerships across the country, including the one that GM had asked me to take over in Northeast Ohio.
Shutting down my dealership killed 50 good paying jobs in my community, and that’s when I realized Washington was interfering too much in our everyday lives.
That’s why I decided to run for Congress. It’s been an experience and an honor to represent Ohio in Washington.
I’m hopeful that our new Administration and a new Congress will turn things around in Washington. Earlier this year I decided that I’d had enough of D.C. dysfunction and decided to come back home to run for Governor and deliver real change to our state—change that is needed.
Simply put, today Ohio is lagging behind, and we can and must do better. We have plummeted from 21st to 37th nationally in job creation, our regulatory climate is pushing businesses out of our state, and right now we lead the country in only one major statistic—the number of opioid related overdose deaths.
I remember Ohio as the land of opportunity. That’s why I came here. Now our children and grandchildren are leaving for opportunities elsewhere. The Dispatch reported earlier this year that Ohio has the dubious distinction of being in the top ten of Most moved from states in 2016. We need to reverse that trend and make our state once again the land of opportunity. A place to come and stay. A place to live the American Dream just like I did not so many years ago.
We need to turn those trends around, and doing so will require fresh leadership and a new perspective in Columbus. I am truly the only Columbus outsider running for Governor and the only non-career politician in the race. I’m the only candidate for governor who has spent most of my career signing the front of paychecks, rather than the back. And that’s the type of fresh leadership and new vision that I believe we need right now.
As Governor, I’ll take my real-life experience to the office. I’ll streamline our tax code, upend our regulatory overreach, take on the opioid crises from the community level up and make Ohio First. I am the only one who can truly say I’m not part of the status quo and will end the status quo.
There is no doubt we face some tough challenges today, but I do believe that with the right leadership, Ohio’s best days are yet to come.
I hope to earn your support. Please take the time to learn more about me and my positions here.