Meet Spencer Cox, Utah’s new Lt. Governor

Utah's new Lt Governor

Utah’s new Lt Governor, Spencer Cox and family

Earlier this week, Governor Gary Herbert finally ended speculation on his pick for Lt. Governor  – and still managed to surprise most in the political arena. In fact, kudos have to go to the guv, his peeps and Spencer Cox’s peeps for doing SUCH a good job keeping things under wraps.  Pretty fun.

At the press conference announcing his new right-hand man, Governor Herbert said he
wanted someone who had held elected office, someone who had “been in the arena” and won, someone who had opportunites to work with the legislature, who had impeccable integrity. who had been involved in the private sector and understood what it takes to create jobs.  Nothing much, right?

He also said he was looking for someone with a fresh perspective, with a strong work ethic, who fit well with the Governor, and also his senior staff and cabinet members.

With that list of qualifications from the Guv, Spencer Cox is a perfect fit.   He’s young (38), from rural Utah, a former city council member, a former mayor (of Fairview) a former Sanpete county commissioner AND now a member of the Utah House of Representatives. Oh, he’s also an attorney, the president and CEO of rural telecom company, a husband and a father and has even been an LDS Bishop. And a bassist in a band. And is active on social media. (You should follow him on Facebook and Twitter.)

I had the pleasure of meeting soon-to-be LG Cox a couple of years ago and quickly learned that there is no one who knows more about the Gooseberry Narrows and the Central Utah Water Project than Spencer Cox. He is passionate about this state and is well-versed in many of the issues affecting us. On top of that, he and his wife Abby are kind-hearted, intelligent, principled people and proud of their deep roots in Sanpete county.

After Governor Herbert’s announcement and introduction, Rep Cox rose to speak, He remarked that the Governor and his team had been VERY thorough, leaving no stone unturned in their personal, professional and public lives.

He said he recognized the immense responsibility and noted that the “mantle weighs heavy” but also noted that he is no stranger to public office.  (So true – I talked to one of his colleagues this week and we decided he must have graduated from law school when he was 15. When I was 38, I was in the middle of raising kids and just starting to pay attention to politics. I’m such a slacker.)

Spencer gave a shout-out to outgoing LG Greg Bell. He said he was devastated by Bell’s announcement that he was resigning. Shortly after he heard the news, he and Rep Steve Eliason were discussing the LG”s departure and decided they were both mad at the new guy, not knowing – or caring – who the new guy was. He then quipped that he was pretty sure Rep Eliason is STILL mad at the new guy….

He said that he is excited to serve, and excited to share same goals as the Herbert administration. He is passionate about jobs, education, and energy production.  Calling the lack of leadership at the federal level a “travesty“, he said that if the rest of the nation were run the way Utah is we would not have the problems we currently do.  He has a passion for limited and efficient government and said he looks forward to taking this state not just out of the economic downturn but in to a new era of prosperity.

Many of the names mentioned as possibilities to replace Greg Bell would have been great choices but to snag Spencer Cox is a brilliant move. I, for one, am incredibly excited and optimistic about the future of Utah with Spencer Cox in the administration.

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  1. You are right Holly. He has all of the qualifications for public office in Utah: white, male, LDS.