Ron Hanks, of Fremont County, is running for the seat representing Colorado House District 60 in the November election.
He has been a U.S. Air Force officer and a small business owner.
Hanks is running as a Republican.
Q What is your education and background?
A I am a 32 year veteran of the U.S. Air Force. I enlisted in 1984.
During that time I served as an Arabic linguist, both overseas and at the National Security Agency in Maryland. I was also an engineer assistant and site developer, trained in mobility and expeditionary Air Force deployment and facilitated airbase recovery after attacks.
I earned an associates degree in intelligence collection from Community College of the Air Force, and later a bachelor degree in management from the University of Maryland.
I was then commissioned as a intelligence officer, again in the U.S. Air Force. I was a badged and credentialed counter-intelligence officer, trained at the Joint Counter Intelligence Training Academy in Jessup, Maryland.
I worked as an anti-terrorism and force protection officer with Advanced Airlift Intelligence.
I was a mission intelligence coordinator and wing intelligence officer on drone unmanned aerial vehicle operations.
I served in several other capacities during my career.
I was a nuclear treaty escort for inspectors from Russia and other countries.
I served as a counter drug officer in Kazakhstan, stopping the drug flow from Afghanistan that funded the Taliban and Al Qaeda.
In the private sector I ran a heavy equipment operations and commercial truck driving school in Sun Prairie, Wisc.
I also served as the Fremont County Republican Central Committee secretary in 2019.
Q Why did you decide to run for this office?
A I view public office as I view military service. Colorado is enduring an out-of-balance political cycle. Balanced government is better, and I volunteered to serve to bring rural Colorado’s perspectives to Denver.
Q What are some of the challenges of representing the four counties of District 60, with its diverse economies?
A I don’t see the diversity of economies as a challenge, but a blessing. The biggest challenge is distance: Long travel times generate schedule conflicts. However, in the post-COVID-19 environment, I anticipate more interaction, and I will put a lot of miles on the truck.
Q How do you plan to support the people of District 60 in recovering from the effects of COVID-19?
A I have a two step plan.
1. Limit government spending. Colorado’s state budget was projected to be around $34 billion in 2020, and it grows by billions every year. Government should not be taking wealth from families and assets from business so that government may grow – especially post-COVID-19.
2. Tax breaks and home school tax credits would help offset some costs and losses incurred, but we all know some businesses decimated beyond recovery, and families that were severely strained
Q What do you see as the top 3 challenges District 60 is facing?
A The answer to this question has changed as COVID-19 events have transpired. The new challenges focus on post-COVID-19 societal changes and economic recovery for families and business.
Some solutions are in my answer to the previous question.
I would also include fire-mitigation as a major challenge. We can eliminate these massive, expensive, deadly fires through better land management and we’d have cleaner air.
Q Why are you the best candidate for the job?
A That is for the voters to decide, but I will approach this office with the same devotion and commitment I kept during 32 years of military service.
I will work in Denver to limit government intrusion and to maintain our rural Colorado way of life.