Lang Sias a force to be reckoned with and a star of the Republican Party (letter) | VailDaily.com

Lang Sias a force to be reckoned with and a star of the Republican Party (letter)

A Democratic consultant once said, "Lang Sias scares the crap out of me" — and for good reason.

In case you haven't tuned in to Republican politics lately, maybe you missed that the "guy with the funny name" is now candidate for lieutenant governor. At least that's how we all referred to him in 2010. The "we all" I'm talking about is the group of candidates that ran for office in 2010.

It's a phenomenon of running for office: All of the people who run in any given year form a sort of bond. For one thing, they're at all the same events and speaking on the same stages for the entire election season.

Unless you've run for office, you can't really understand how the process works: the tension, the thousands of miles, the demands, the hoarse voice, the pressure of hectic schedules that goes on forever. You can't imagine the relentless questions and interviews, the horrors of fundraising, the lack of sleep and the running on empty that plagues all candidates.

And that's how I met Lang and Walker Stapleton. Actually, that's how they met each other. I was running for the State Board of Education from the 2nd Congressional District, while Lang was in a primary race for the 7th Congressional District and Walker was running for state treasurer.

Walker succeeded, I lost, and Lang lost but persevered. He then ran for Senate District 19 and lost to the Democratic candidate by 554 votes when a Libertarian was the spoiler with 5,014 votes. Some would say the third time is the charm, but it came as the result of a Vacancy Committee appointment to House District 27 in 2015, to which he was subsequently elected.

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So back to the quote: It's because even before he "made it" in politics, he was a force to be reckoned with. Earning a bachelor's degree from Vassar and a law degree from University of Michigan Law School, he went on to a Master of Science from the London School of Economics.

He served in the U.S. military from 1986 to 2015, graduated first in his class from Aviator Officer Training School and attended Naval Flight Weapons School (Top Gun), where he went on to be an instructor. As a combat veteran, he served in the Middle East and Operation Desert Storm and retired from the Air National Guard as a lieutenant colonel.

Then on to business: Lang joined the firm of Cooley LLC, where he helped entrepreneurs and small businesses commercialize their cutting-edge technologies. Currently, Rep. Sias works as a 777 pilot for FedEx.

As Lynn Bartel said, "In Sias, they saw a future star for the Republican Party — a former Top Gun naval instructor with a sterling military record, a lawyer with a business background, a former Democrat and unaffiliated voter." That's what scared the crap out of Steve Welchert.

Walker Stapleton should be commended for having the foresight to tap Lang as his running mate. If this choice is any indication of the people Walker will surround himself with, the future of the state of Colorado is secure.

Kaye Ferry

Chairperson, Eagle County Republican Party