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Colorado Leadership

Colorado Republican Party

| http://www.cologop.org/

Phone: 303.758.3333 Fax: 303.362.6020

5950 S. Willow Drive, Suite 210 Greenwood Village, CO 80111

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State Chairman

Jeff Hays

Following former Chairman Steve House’s January announcement that he would not be seeking re-election as state party chairman, Colorado Republicans elected former El Paso County chairman Jeff Hays as the state party’s new chair during the State Central Committee Meeting held April 1, 2017 in Englewood.

Former El Paso County Republican Chair Jeff Hays will lead Colorado’s Republicans for the next two years. Hays had led the El Paso County GOP, the state’s largest county party, for two terms before announcing earlier this year he would seek to become state party chair.

“I’m humbled, I’m happy, I’m ready to get to work,” Hays said after the vote by the state party Central Committee. “Everyone who’s heard me give a stump speech has heard me spell the word “fun” — W-I-N. My goal is to make sure Colorado’s Republicans have a lot of fun in November 2018.”

Jeff Hays was born in Dallas, Texas to Jack and Ellen Hays. Growing up in El Campo and then West Columbia, Texas, Hays graduated from Columbia High School. A three sport athlete and valedictorian, Hays continued his education at the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, CO, where he lettered in football and majored in Biology.

After graduation and commissioning as an Air Force officer, Jeff briefly coached the junior varsity football team. He then entered the acquisition career field, first as an acquisition logistician at Eglin AFB and then as a test manager at Bergstrom AFB.

Jeff was offered the opportunity to pursue a Master’s degree in Biology at the University of Texas at Austin, followed by an assignment as a Biology Instructor at the Air Force Academy. After a successful stint there, he cross-trained into the Aerospace Physiology career field and was the Aerospace Physiology Flight commander at Beale AFB, where he worked with the U-2 program.

Jeff was then offered the opportunity to be the Recruiting Coordinator and varsity kicking coach at the Air Force Academy, which he did until his retirement as a Lieutenant Colonel in February 2005.

After retirement, Jeff has been an independent contractor, high school Activities Director, kicking consultant for the Denver Broncos, and the chairman of the El Paso County Republican Party. He is currently a management consultant and chairman of the Colorado Republican Party.

Jeff and his wife, Gina, live in Monument, CO and have three daughters and one granddaughter.


National Committeewoman

Vera Ortegon

Colorado GOP National Committeewoman Vera Ortegon is a longtime leader in the Colorado Republican Party. In 2014, Mike Kopp, GOP Colorado gubernatorial candidate, chose her as his Lieutenant Governor candidate. In 2012, she was one of the nine GOP Presidential Electors for the State of Colorado.

Vera is also a former Pueblo City Councilwoman, a business owner for the last 35 years, very involved in Colorado water issues for over two decades, and precinct chair for the past 20 years. She was born and raised in Colombia, South America, legally immigrated to the United States, and she was Naturalized in 1977.

She graduated with a degree in Microbiology and Biochemistry from Rutgers University. Vera has been married for 40 years to Dr. Anthony Ortegon, and they have two sons, two great daughters-in-law, and two adorable grandchildren.

National Committeeman

George Leing

George has over 30 years of experience as a lawyer and a banker in the finance and energy fields. He is currently Group SVP and General Counsel to an international technology company. Up until his announcement to run for Congress to represent Colorado’s Second Congressional District, George had been serving as Chairman of the Republican Party in Boulder County and was elected by a group of other Republican Chairs to serve on the Executive Committee of the State Party. George was also appointed by Secretary of State Scott Gessler and reappointed by Secretary of State Wayne Williams to serve on the Advisory Committee on a Uniform Voting System. Also, George was appointed by Treasurer Walker Stapleton to serve on the Treasurer's Investment Advisory Committee.

George was elected as Colorado's RNC National Committeeman to fill a vacancy in December 2015 and was re-elected to serve a full term in April 2016.

George is the youngest of four children of Chinese immigrants who came to America following World War II. Born and raised in New York City, George is a graduate of New York University, and holds a law degree from Georgetown University and a master’s degree in religion from Yale University.

George lives in Niwot, CO, with his wife of 26 years, Sarah of Billings, MT.  Together, they have a son Thomas who is attending college.

 


Executive Director

Shana Kohn Banberger

Senator

Cory Gardner

Senator Cory Gardner is a fifth-generation Coloradan who was born and raised in Yuma, a small town on the Eastern Plains of Colorado where his family has owned a farm implement dealership for over a century. He lives in the same house his great-grandparents lived in. Cory graduated summa cum laude from Colorado State University and received his law degree from the University of Colorado Boulder. After working at his family implement business and the National Corn Growers Association, Cory took a position as a Legislative Assistant for Senator Wayne Allard (R-CO) and quickly advanced to his Legislative Director.

He began serving in the Colorado House of Representatives in 2005 where he spent time as the Minority Whip and became known for his expertise in natural resource and agriculture policy. Cory was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2010. As a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Cory championed a true all-of-the-above energy strategy that promoted traditional resources as well as renewable energy. In addition, Cory is a national leader on energy efficiency initiatives and founded a bipartisan energy efficiency caucus in the House.

In the Senate, Cory continues to pursue common sense energy policy as a member of the Senate Energy & Natural Resource Committee and Chairman of the Energy Subcommittee. In addition, Cory serves on the Foreign Relations Committee, the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, and the Budget Committee. He also serves as Chairman of the Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific, and International Cybersecurity Policy.

As Chairman of the Foreign Relations Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific, and International Cybersecurity Policy, Cory led the effort to impose broad new sanctions against North Korea, as the regime continues to be a leading abuser of human rights and its reckless advancement of nuclear weapons threatens our national security.

Cory is focused on expanding the economy, creating jobs, and making life better for all Coloradans.

He lives in Yuma with his wife Jaime and their three children: Alyson, Thatcher, and Caitlyn.

Congressman

Ken Buck

Congressman Ken Buck is a Republican from Windsor, representing Colorado's 4th Congressional District. He was first elected to Congress on November 4, 2014, and is currently serving his second term in the United States House of Representatives. 

Ken serves on the House Judiciary Committee and the House Committee on Rules.  He serves on the Judiciary Subcommittees on Immigration and Border Security and Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security and Investigations.

Ken Buck learned the value of hard work from his grandfather, who opened a shoe repair store in Greeley in the 1930’s. One of three brothers, Ken worked his way through high school, college and law school as a janitor, truck driver, furniture mover and as a ranch hand.

After law school, Ken worked for Congressman Dick Cheney (R-WY) on the Iran-Contra Investigation and then became a prosecutor with the U.S. Department of Justice. In 1990 Ken joined the Colorado U.S. Attorney’s Office where he became the Chief of the Criminal Division.

In 2002 Ken joined Hensel Phelps Construction Co. in Greeley as a business executive.

Starting in 2004 Ken Buck was elected Weld County District Attorney three times. He led a staff of more than sixty people with a strong record of criminal prosecution and crime prevention. Under Ken’s leadership, the crime rate in Weld County dropped 50%, one of the best records in the country.

Ken is a Christian and a leader in his profession and community. Ken has volunteered and served on the boards of many important community groups. As District Attorney, Ken brought together community leaders to create the Juvenile Assessment Center (JAC). The Center has helped more than two thousand kids and their families get back on the right path in life.

Ken's wife Perry is currently a Representative in the Colorado House. They live in Windsor where Perry owns a small business. Ken’s son Cody graduated from West Point and is a US Army Officer. Ken's daughter Kaitlin is a business executive in Colorado after graduating from Clemson University.

Congressman

Scott Tipton

Congressman Scott Tipton was raised in Cortez, Colorado. He graduated from Ft. Lewis College in Durango, where he studied Political Science and became the first person in his family to earn a college degree. After college, he returned home to Cortez and co-founded Mesa Verde Indian Pottery with his brother Joe. It was through his business that Scott met his wife, Jean, who is a former school teacher. The Tiptons have two daughters, Liesl and Elizabeth, two sons-in-law, Chris and Jace, and three grandchildren.

After three decades of running his small business, Scott was elected as a Republican to the Colorado House of Representatives for the 58th District in November of 2008. During his time at the State House, he worked to ensure quality water for the people of Colorado and to improve the air quality of Southwest Colorado. He also sponsored legislation to protect children from the worst criminal offenders by mandating harsher penalties for child sex-offenders and allowing law enforcement to collect DNA evidence from suspects through Jessica’s Law and Katie’s Law.

Scott was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2010. He currently serves on the House Committee on Financial Services and House Natural Resources Committee. He is Co-chairman of the Congressional Small Business Caucus and Vice Chair of the Congressional Western Caucus.

Throughout his time as a U.S. Representative, Scott’s priority has been to advance policies that grow jobs, support the economy, and keep Colorado’s families safe and secure.

Scott pushed hard to advance a federal version of Katie’s Law to encourage additional states to implement minimum DNA collection standards and enhanced collection processes for felons in order to strengthen law enforcement’s ability to prevent violent crimes, and protect women and children.  That effort became a reality when the President signed Katie’s Law on January 3, 2013.

Scott has passed numerous pieces of legislation in the House of Representatives, including bills to advance healthy forest management and prevent wildfire, and encourage all-of-the-above energy development. Scott’s bipartisan bill to advance the development of clean, renewable hydropower was signed into law on August 9, 2013. He is also leading the charge in Congress to stop federal attempts to encroach on private property, including fighting massive federal grabs of privately-held water rights—standing up for farmers and ranchers, the ski industry, and all who rely on their water rights to survive.

Scott has used his experience as a small businessman to inform his work in Congress. He is a co-founder of the Congressional Small Business Caucus, a bipartisan caucus committed to open dialogue on the issues that most impact small businesses. Scott has led the bipartisan effort to give community banks more flexibility to focus their limited resources on community needs. His bill, the Small Bank Exam Cycle Reform Act of 2015, was signed into law in the 114th Congress. Scott continues to work to advance policies that foster the economic certainty needed for small businesses and entrepreneurs to succeed and create jobs.

As Vice Chair of the Congressional Western Caucus, Scott is the champion of efforts to implement to an all-of-the-above energy solution that balances common sense conservation with responsible development. He has fought to protect farmers and ranchers from regulatory overreach, as well as pushed for expanded trade opportunities for Colorado products.

Scott will continue the fight to bring Colorado common sense to Washington—focusing on reforming regulation, reining in executive overreach, protecting Colorado’s natural environment, encouraging responsible all-of-the-above energy development, reducing government spending, and removing hurdles so that small businesses can do what they do best—create jobs.

Congressman

Doug Lamborn

Born in Leavenworth, Kansas in 1954, Congressman Lamborn had service-before-self instilled in him at an early age by his father, a World War II combat veteran and a corrections officer at the Leavenworth Federal Penitentiary.

After meeting his wife Jeanie, Doug graduated from the University of Kansas with a Journalism Degree (as a National Merit Scholar). As they began to raise their five children, Doug worked hard to put himself through law school, earning a law degree from the University of Kansas before moving his family to Colorado Springs, Colorado to practice business and real estate law.

It was in Colorado that Doug was called to public office and served in the Colorado General Assembly from 1995 to 2006, in both the State House and State Senate. During his time in the Colorado Legislature, Doug was elected Senate President Pro-Tem, served as Chairman of the Senate State Military and Veterans Affairs Committee, Chairman of the Senate Republican Caucus, and House Majority Whip. He was also the lead sponsor of the largest tax cut in Colorado history. Doug also introduced legislation creating a license plate honoring Bronze Star recipients, exempting active duty soldiers from paying state income taxes, allowing public school students to recite the Pledge of Allegiance, eliminating and reducing state services to illegal immigrants, banning late-term abortions, implementing DNA testing of convicted felons, eliminating sales tax on telephone service, eliminating the business personal property tax for thousands of businesses, and repealing expired and outdated laws. While serving in the part-time State Legislature, Doug continued to practice law and raise a family.

Doug was then elected to the US House of Representatives in 2006 to represent Colorado’s Fifth District. Colorado’s Fifth District, based in Colorado Springs, is one of our nation’s most military-intensive congressional districts and the proud home to more than 100,000 veterans who have served our country with distinction and honor. Because of the district's military and veterans concentration, Doug serves as a high-ranking member on the House Armed Services Committee. In this roles, he has protected important national defense funding, programs, and missions and has fought hard for the right of veterans to receive the healthcare they have earned.

Additionally, the Congressman has worked since his first full day in office to bring about a dignified and fitting National Veterans Cemetery to the Pikes Peak Region, and he is well on the way to achieving that goal, with construction slated to begin in the near future.

Additionally Doug serves on the the Strategic Forces and Emerging Threats and Capabilities Subcommittees of the House Armed Services Committee. The Strategic Forces Subcommittee oversees our nation’s strategic weapons, ballistic missile defense, space programs, and Department of Energy national security programs (excluding nonproliferation programs). It makes sure our nation is properly prepared for any missile or nuclear attacks. The Emerging Threats and Capabilities Subcommittee is responsible for overseeing counter-terrorism programs and initiatives and counter proliferation of weapons of mass destruction.

Doug also serves as the Chairman of the House Natural Resources Committee’s Subcommittee on Water, Power, and Oceans. This Subcommittee is responsible for water resources, federal irrigation projects, hydroelectric energy efforts, interstate water issues, fisheries, and more.

This new assignment places him in the middle of important concerns affecting the West. Doug is looking forward to working with diverse groups who have a stake in the region’s water future and is committed to providing the leadership and oversight needed to ensure stable and clean water supplies for the Fifth Congressional District and for Colorado.

Throughout his time in public service, Doug has been a leader on pro-family and small business issues, a strong advocate for our veterans and our military, and a supporter of lower taxes, immigration reform, less government spending, and protection of the Second Amendment.

Doug is married to Jeanie, his wife of 41 years and an accomplished artist and former teacher at the Bemis School of Art in Colorado Springs. The Lamborns have also raised five extremely successful children. Their four sons were Eagle Scouts and, among them, have served as a doctor, in the military, as an attorney, and as a member of the creative arts community in Los Angeles. Their daughter was an accomplished collegiate track and field athlete and holds a Master's Degree in Journalism. The family has continued to grow with the addition of a son-in-law who works in the medical field and two daughters-in-law, one of whom is a Christian missionary and one of whom served as a Deputy District Attorney in El Paso County. The youngest members of the family are three beloved grandchildren.

Congressman

Mike Coffman

Congressman Mike Coffman began his distinguished career of serving our nation at a very young age.  At age seventeen, after finishing his junior year at Aurora Central High School in 1972, he enlisted in the U.S. Army.Through the Army, Coffman was able to earn a high school diploma.  In 1974, he left active duty to attend the University of Colorado under the G.I. Bill where he continued his military career by serving in the U.S. Army Reserve.  Coffman took a leave of absence from the U.S. Army Reserve and the University of Colorado to attend D.G. Vaishnav College in Chennai, India in 1976 and the University of Veracruz in Xalapa, Mexico in 1977.  Coffman graduated from the University of Colorado in 1979 and immediately transferred from the U.S. Army Reserve to the U.S. Marine Corps where he served as an infantry officer.

In 1983, Coffman came back home to Colorado and started a small business, an Aurora-based property management company, that would grow to over 20 employees. He remained the senior share holder of the firm for the next seventeen years until selling his interest in 2000. While in business, he continued serving in the military by joining the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve.

In his role as a Colorado small business owner, Coffman saw the need to bring more common sense pro-growth economic policies to state government so he ran and was elected to the State House of Representatives in 1988 and re-elected in 1990.  Shortly after his 1990 re-election, Coffman took an unpaid leave of absence from the state legislature and volunteered to return to active duty for the first Gulf War where he served as the executive officer for a light armored infantry company.   The battalion that Coffman served in was ordered to attack and defend positions inside of Kuwait, for three consecutive days prior to the main ground attack, as part of a deception and reconnaissance-by-fire operation.  Coffman retired from the military in 1994 after having served for seven years between the U.S. Army and the Army Reserve and thirteen years between the U.S. Marine Corps and the Marine Corps Reserve.

In 1994, Coffman was elected to the State Senate where he served as the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee.  While in the State Senate, he completed the Senior Executive Program for State and Local Government at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.  In 1998, Coffman was elected to the office of State Treasurer and re-elected in 2002.  In 2005, the U.S. Marine Corps was under strength in meeting their requirements for the Iraq War and begun to extend Marines beyond their active duty enlistments, recall Marines recently released from active duty, and selectively reach out to retired Marines and request their return to active duty.   Coffman resigned his position as the State Treasurer and volunteered to return to the U.S. Marine Corps for an assignment in Iraq.  In Iraq, Coffman was a civil affairs officer where he worked in support of the Independent Electoral Commission of Iraq (IECI) in 2005 and in 2006 he was reassigned to help establish interim local governments in the Western Euphrates River Valley.

In 2006, Coffman came home after completing a full tour of duty in Iraq and was appointed by Governor Bill Owens to serve out the remainder of his term as the State Treasurer.  In that same year, he ran and was elected to the Office of Secretary of State and served in that capacity until he was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2008.

Coffman is the only veteran in the Colorado delegation and the only Member of Congress to have served in both Iraq Wars.  Congressman Coffman represents the 6th Congressional District of Colorado and serves on the Veteran’s Affairs Committee and the Armed Services Committee where he is the Chairman for the Subcommittee on Military Personnel.

Coffman and his wife Cynthia were married in 2005 just before he deployed to Iraq with the U.S. Marine Corps.  Cynthia Coffman was the Chief Legal Counsel to Governor Bill Owens before becoming the Attorney General for the State of Colorado.  Coffman attends Faith Presbyterian Church in Aurora with his mother, Dorothy Coffman.

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