A long list of current and former business leaders, executives and entrepreneurs are running for office in this year’s midterm elections.
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Here are gubernatorial and U.S. Senate candidates who have experience in the business world.
Bob Hugin (R-New Jersey)
Hugin, the Republican candidate for a U.S. Senate seat in New Jersey, had a long career in business. He is best known for his roles as CEO and executive chairman of Celgene, the biopharmaceutical company headquartered in New Jersey. He also worked for JPMorgan Chase.
The Marine Corps veteran joined Celgene as its chief financial officer in 1999. He retired as executive chairman in January, shortly before announcing that he would run against incumbent Sen. Robert Menendez, a New Jersey Democrat mired in controversy.
Hugin was credited with turning Celgene around. The drugmaker made just one product when Hugin started working at the company. It grew into a major player in biopharmaceuticals with a market value of around $80 billion by the time Hugin left this year, according to The New York Times.
Bill Lee (R-Tennessee)
Lee is the Republican candidate for governor in Tennessee. According to his website, he joined the family business after graduating from Auburn University as a mechanical engineer. He now serves as chairman of Lee Company, which provides heating, cooling, electrical, plumbing and appliance services for residential and commercial customers. The company employs more than 1,200 people with annual revenues of $215 million, according to Lee’s website. He also works for the family farm, Triple L Ranch.
Larry Hogan (R-Maryland)
Hogan, the incumbent governor of Maryland, is running for re-election. He first worked in politics after graduating from Florida State University, but he later founded Annapolis-based Hogan Companies, a real estate development and investment firm.
Pete Ricketts (R-Nebraska)
The son of TD Ameritrade founder Joe Ricketts, Pete Ricketts is seeking re-election following his first term as governor of Nebraska. During his tenure at TD Ameritrade, he worked in several capacities and eventually served as the brokerage firm’s chief operating officer. The Ricketts family also owns the Chicago Cubs. Pete’s brother, Thomas, serves as the MLB franchise’s chairman.
Doug Ducey (R-Arizona)
Ducey, Arizona’s governor, is seeking re-election. He is the former CEO of ice cream chain Cold Stone Creamery. He also was a part owner of the company, which he and his business partner sold in 2007.
Fred Hubbell (D-Iowa)
Hubbell is running for governor of Iowa against Kim Reynolds, the incumbent Republican. In the 1980s, Hubbell was the chairman of Younkers, a department store chain that now operates as an e-commerce retailer. He later served as president of Equitable of Iowa, a life insurance provider.
Steve Sisolak (D-Nevada)
Sisolak is running for the open seat as Nevada’s governor. He opened two businesses that made promotional products for companies and other organizations, according to his Clark County Commission biography.
Shawn Moody (R-Maine)
Moody is running for governor of Maine. He has never held elected office. Moody has had a long career in the auto repair business since building his first shop just before his 18th birthday. Moody’s Collision Centers now has several locations across the state. He also made a name for himself turning a junkyard into an auto recycling facility, which he later sold for millions, according to the Portland Press Herald.
Bob Stefanowski (R-Connecticut)
A former General Electric and UBS executive, Stefanowski is running for governor of Connecticut. He has held several leadership positions with large corporations. At GE, he led the GE Commercial & Industrial Finance unit and later the GE Telecom, Media & Technology Finance division. He also served as chief financial officer of UBS and CEO of Dollar Financial Group.
Jared Polis (D-Colorado)
Polis, the Democratic candidate for governor in Colorado, co-founded and later sold American Information Systems, an internet access provider. He also co-founded BlueMountain.com, which offers free digital greeting cards.
He is probably best known for founding ProFlowers. Liberty Media acquired the online florist for $477 million in 2006.
Walker Stapleton (R-Colorado)
Stapleton, the current state treasurer of Colorado, also began his career in business. He got his start as an investment banker and later worked with tech startups in the Bay Area, according to the Denver Post. In addition to other positions, Stapleton served as CEO of Sonoma West, a commercial property firm in California’s wine country.
Scott Wagner (R-Pennsylvania)
Wagner has built a career in waste management and trucking. He founded Penn Waste in 2000, and the company employs about 400 people.
Matthew Corey (R-Connecticut)
Corey worked for the U.S. Postal Service and as a truck driver after a stint in the U.S. Navy, according to the Fairfield County Business Journal. He started Advanced Services International, a commercial window cleaning business, in 1990. He also opened a pub in Hartford, Connecticut, about 16 years ago but recently closed it in search of a larger location.
Tina Smith (D-Minnesota)
Smith, the junior senator from Minnesota, once worked in marketing for General Mills. She also ran her own marketing firm before getting into politics.
Karin Housley (R-Minnesota)
Housley, Smith’s Republican opponent in Minnesota, has run her own real estate agency, Karin Housley Homes, for 15 years. Her husband, Phil Housley, is the head coach of the Buffalo Sabres.
Rick Scott (R-Florida)
Scott, the current governor of Florida, is running to unseat incumbent Sen. Bill Nelson in the Sunshine State. The U.S. Navy veteran had a long career in the health-care industry. He co-founded Columbia Hospital Corp. and helped steer a merger with Hospital Corporation of America. After his tenure as CEO of the combined company, Scott jump started a career as a venture capitalist with investments in health care, technology and other sectors. In the 1990s, Scott was part of the Texas Rangers’ ownership group, which also included former President George W. Bush.
John James (R-Michigan)
James served in the U.S. Army for eight years following his graduation from the U.S. Military Academy. After leaving the Army, James got a job working for the family business, logistics company James Group International. James serves as president of the company and has overseen its growth to $137 million in revenue from $35 million, according to the Senate candidate’s website.
Mike Braun (R-Indiana)
Braun is the president and CEO of Meyer Distributing, an auto parts company he owns. He is running against incumbent Sen. Joe Donnelly.