Cincinnati — Democrat Connie Pillich has officially launched her campaign for Ohio Governor. Pillich, a former Captain in the U.S. Air Force, made the announcement in a campaign video recorded along the same route she joined with thousands of women on January 21st as part of the Cincinnati Women’s March.
Heading towards Washington Park, Pillich declares early in the video, “There is so much we have to do. We cannot let the energy and determination fade away.” Inspired by the march, Pillich later adds, “I feel as determined and patriotic as I did when I went to college on an ROTC scholarship.
“I learned in the Air Force that no matter what the challenge, if you work together and face it head on, you can make a difference,” said Pillich on why she’s running. “Too many in Ohio are hurting. Our strained communities are looking for new leaders willing to stand for something larger than themselves.
“We as Democrats have got to reclaim our status as patriots, we cannot be afraid to stand up for our values. We believe individual liberty and shared responsibility lead to equal opportunity. We need new, progressive and unflinching leadership to improve our schools, rebuild our infrastructure, bring back industry and the jobs that can support a family.”
The youngest of five, Pillich grew up in a working-class neighborhood in the shadow of a steel mill. In high school, the mill began to close, devastating the community and cutting off any opportunity for Pillich to have a successful, thriving future in her hometown. And so, Pillich put herself through college with an ROTC scholarship, student loans, and part-time work.
As an officer in the Air Force, Pillich completed her MBA, served in Berlin at the height of the Cold War, and served in support of Operations Desert Storm and Desert Shield. Pillich and her husband then settled in Cincinnati and started a family, and she graduated from law school.
While her son and daughter were growing up, Pillich worked as a public defender and later opened her own law practice where she challenged predatory lenders on behalf of vulnerable senior citizens. Later she served three terms in the House of Representatives, representing Ohio’s 28th District in the Cincinnati area.
As a State Representative, Pillich worked with Democrats and Republicans in support of military service members by introducing bipartisan legislation to connect veterans to their benefits, help military families meet the financial challenges of military transfers, and help veterans and their families get back to work.