Milleson has experience to lead the 95th

We are lucky to live in a day and age where individuals are able to voice their unique opinions and concerns on social, economic, and political issues through print and digital news media outlets, social media applications, and other public fora. These avenues should make Americans of all walks of life feel like they have a voice, and that that voice can matter. I, for one, feel fortunate to have the ability to publicly support political candidates through avenues other than the ballot box.

As a resident of Cleveland, I am unable to cast a vote this November for Dan Milleson, Democratic candidate for the Ohio House of Representatives for the 9th District (encompassing Carroll, Harrison, and Noble counties, and parts of Belmont and Washington counties). But I am hopeful that this publication will allow my support for Milleson to nonetheless be heard.

Although I have not been a full-time resident of the Ohio Valley for nearly 12 years, I still have wonderful friends and family who reside there, and I still care deeply for the people of the 95th District and their economic and social well-being.

I should preface my support for Milleson with the disclaimer that I am a registered Republican and Milleson and I hold incongruous views on many national-level political issues.

I nevertheless want to voice my support for Milleson because I am confident he possesses the knowledge, work ethic, and determination to best represent the interests of the residents of the 95th District in Columbus next year.

I have known Milleson personally for almost 20 years. He has been a classmate, a teammate, a trusted business partner, and most importantly, a friend. Milleson returned to Harrison County in 2010 after earning his degree from Ohio University, immersed himself in the family insurance business and continued to explore other entrepreneurial opportunities throughout the Ohio Valley.

He is now the owner and principal agent of Milleson Insurance in Freeport and a co-owner of Vintage Fitness in Cadiz. Milleson’s experience as an insurance agency owner has required him to field a myriad of phone calls and sit in countless living rooms with clients and listen to the types of challenges everyday people of the 95th District face – unemployment, catastrophic loss events, unequal access to technology and education, and stories of families and friends affected by this area’s unmitigated opioid epidemic.

To many of these people, Milleson is not just the face behind an insurance policy, but an advocate for their individual interests and a caring friend. Milleson’s experience as a business owner has provided him an indepth look at the unique challenges small business owners in the 95th District face and has readied him to fight for small business owner interests in Columbus.

Milleson was also instrumental in the passage of the Harrison Hills School District levy in 2016, which will allow for the construction of a state of the art facility in the district. Milleson’s work with the coalition responsible for raising support for the levy, the voters of Harrison County, and local leadership is a true testament to his ability to gain bipartisan support on an issue that will positively impact Harrison County’s youth for decades to come.

Simply put, Milleson is one of those rare, altruistic individuals who finds working on behalf of others both meaningful and fulfilling-the precise characteristic we should all use when vetting candidates for public office.

Throughout the early stages of his campaign, Milleson remains energetic and focused on the interests of his would-be constituents.

He is proactively meeting with community organizations, labor unions, local chambers of commerce, and veterans groups in order to better understand the issues that voters face.

Milleson’s efforts during these early campaign months demonstrate that he will be a zealous advocate for the constituents of the 95th District and is ready and willing to roll up his shirtsleeves and work to effect meaningful change as a lawmaker in the Ohio Statehouse.

But don’t take my word for it. Milleson will be making numerous stops throughout the district during the months leading up to the general election this November. I strongly urge you to attend one of these events and experience for yourself the energy and tenacity of a proven leader and a trusted friend.

Mike Thomas