About Mike

Colorado’s newest challenges can be met with our oldest values. We need leadership that can bridge divides and build opportunity for all.

Early Life

My family came to Colorado in the 1960s for a fresh start. For them, Colorado was a place where it didn’t matter who you were or where you came from, all that mattered was the opportunity to build a new life and community. These are the values that shaped my career and my passion for public service.

I grew up in Eagle County, where my family ran a small hotel and I learned firsthand the challenges and rewards of operating a small business. After graduating from college and law school, I became a public school teacher in one of Mississippi’s most impoverished counties and then a public school principal in a juvenile detention center and a high-needs district north of Denver. In each stop, I worked to strengthen classrooms and schools by empowering teachers, parents and students to dream big and then make those dreams reality.


After joining the Colorado State Senate, we prioritized the community over the Capitol, turning my district office into a community center where people came together to address the challenges facing them and their neighbors. During that time, I sponsored more than 120 pieces of legislation generated through discussions in that community center — 100 of which had bipartisan support.

During the two terms I served in the state Senate, I helped pass major progressive legislation, like ASSET, so undocumented students who had spent most of their lives in Colorado could get in-state tuition at college, the CLEAR Act, which fought to stop racial discrimination in the criminal justice system, and JUMP START, to help grow new businesses in rural counties with unlimited potential but limited resources. I fought for these bills as a proud Democrat, but I got them done by building bridges to secure Republican support. Coloradans are a practical people; we're problem solvers who recognize that Colorado works best when we work together. That's the kind of leader I was in the state Senate, and that's the kind of Governor I will be: one who gets things done by crossing divides.


I’m running for Governor because, with all of your help, we can make Colorado a place where it’s still possible to get big things done in government – where we have the courage to run at our state’s toughest problems and the willingness to work across divides to solve them.

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