Columbus natives have done a good job putting the city in the spotlight. Chuck Taylor made the Converse shoe brand famous. Tony Stewart just retired as one of NASCAR’s most accomplished champions. And following the Nov. 8 general election, the city now is home to the next vice president of the United States.
Mike Pence has had quite a journey over the past 16 years, one that has taken him from his hometown of Columbus to Washington as a congressman, to the Statehouse as governor and now back again to Washington starting in January.
Pence lost two congressional bids (1988 and 1990) before winning the first of six consecutive terms in Congress in 2000. During his 12 years in Congress, Pence steadily climbed the ladder within the Republican Party, rising to its third-highest position as chairman of the House Republican Conference.
Pence followed his run in Congress by being elected Indiana’s 50th governor with a narrow victory in 2012. The conservative Republican gave up a chance for a second four-year term in July to join Donald Trump’s presidential ticket.
The stunning victory in the general election by President-elect Donald Trump has also put his running mate in the historic position of being the first Columbus native reach the White House, where Pence will serve as the nation’s second-in-command.
National political analysts see Pence playing a major role in leadership of the country, citing his Washington connections and relationships as difference-makers. He was picked by Trump for the key role of heading up his administration’s transition team.
Pence’s accomplishment is something younger generations can take note of when they dream of what they want to accomplish in their own careers. Big dreams can be realized.