Ron Nehring (Young Leader 2003)
Candidate for Lieutenant Governor of California
What do you like most about Switzerland?
Switzerland is like a fine watch – it is both beautiful, and precise. Whether viewing the Alps from a distance, or walking down Bahnhofstrasse in Zurich, every brick to blade of grass appears to have been placed there by design. Every year when passing through Europe I make a special effort to make a stop in Switzerland, even for a few hours.
What do you like most about the USA?
America’s freedom and economic opportunity are unmatched. We have welcomed countless millions from around the world because in America one is often limited only by one’s own ambitions and talents. We are also blessed with incredible natural beauty. In California alone one can experience redwood forests, extreme deserts, beautiful coastlines, quaint wineries and modern cities all on a single adventure.
What defines your leadership style?
Building an “esprit de corps” among highly talented people committed to a just and worthy cause is a passion of mine. Excellent people who are extremely capable and of sound character form the foundation of a powerful team. Working together to achieve a worthy goal that is bigger than any one person is inspirational and provides the energy necessary to achieve victory. Anyone can move an organization to the market – extraordinarily capable leaders can succeed in also moving the market to them.
Who inspires you?
Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher inspire me because these were leaders with strong convictions rooted in realism possessing a clear vision of a world free of tyranny, and possessing the tenacity to advance toward their goals despite the extent of the challenges and the naysayers.
What is your greatest achievement?
When I became Chairman of the California Republican Party in 2007, the organization was deeply in debt and a review showed a pattern of concluding election cycles in or close to the red. I set the goal of ensuring that when my two terms were finished, we would leave the organization in sound financial shape with a large cash reserve, professional management, and new financial controls. While these objectives were clear, they were not easily attained because of enormous internal pressure from candidates, consultants and others who would personally benefit from excessive spending. We succeeded in resisting these pressures and finding creative ways to ensure that when the gavel dropped for the last time on my Chairmanship, we could look back and say, “we did it.” And we did.
Do you have any weaknesses?
It’s been said that one’s greatest strengths are also one’s weaknesses. I need to constantly challenge myself to occasionally pause and appreciate what has been accomplished before charging up the next hill.
Where do you live?
Pull up a map of the continental United States, look to the extreme Southwest corner, and you will find San Diego County. I live in a small enclave roughly equidistant from the Pacific Ocean to the west and the Mexico border to the south. Sometimes the neighborhood feels as though it possesses more horses and coyotes than people.
What is your favorite place in the world?
With the members of my family.
What is the best book you ever read?
In the fiction category, Tom Clancy’s Executive Orders is my favorite. It’s an excellent tale of how a former intelligence operative becomes President of the United States and manages multiple concurrent world crises, including the event leading to his becoming President. For non-fiction, I highly recommend The Righteous Mind by Jonathan Haidt for providing a clear understanding of the moral foundations that drive so much of people’s decision-making.
What is your goal in life?
To be in a position where I can be most effective in advancing the ideas of freedom and opportunity that produce prosperity and ultimately make the greatest possible contribution to improving the human condition.
About Ron Nehring
Ron Nehring is the leading Republican candidate for Lieutenant Governor of California in 2014.
California Republicans twice elected Ron to serve as the Chairman of the California Republican Party, a post previously held by such luminaries as Caspar Weinberger, who went on to become Secretary of Defense under President Ronald Reagan, and Earl Warren, who later became Governor of California and Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court. From 2001 to 2007 Ron Nehring served as the Chairman of the Republican Party of San Diego County.
Baghdad, Kenya, Honduras and the West Bank are among the regions of the world Ron Nehring has visited as a volunteer lecturer, providing guidance and training to government officials and candidates around the world.
Ron Nehring graduated from Stony Brook University in New York in 1992, and was recognized as a Distinguished Alum in 2010.