Bonnie Davis says she wasn’t necessarily looking to run for public office, but when the Libertarian Party contacted her about running for Chaffee County Commissioner, she decided to put her ideas into action.
Davis says she has the components for the job: a strong history of working with people, planning and data. She faces Democrat incumbent Keith Baker and Republican Hannah Hannah in the District 1 race.
She also says it’s time to have more women in office. “Women offer a different viewpoint on issues,” she says. “We do multiple things at a time; we think differently… we lead differently. As women we have empathy.
“Forty-seven percent of the people in Chaffee County are women,” she says. “We aren’t represented enough.”
She has lived north of Buena Vista for four years as of December. Before that, she lived in Fairplay, and before that, Pittsburgh.
Davis, who is working on a doctorate in global supply-chain management, holds a master’s degree in professional writing and a dual undergrad degree in economics and business administration. She has worked as a strategic analyst for a large transportation company for 28 years and continues to work as an analyst from home.
She says she would retire from her current job if elected to the commissioner’s post.
“I offer change and something different,” she says. “I’ve got the experience to do the job. I have the knowledge and the analytical skills.”
Davis says she wants to a see more specific, measurable, results-driven approach in Chaffee County’s government, as well as more accessibility. She says her experience has readied her for the job.
“It’s about communication, it’s about meetings, it’s about results,” she says. “That’s what my job is about; it’s very results-driven.” She says that while the events in the corporate and county worlds are different, the situations themselves can be very similar.
She adds that it’s important to “collaborate with the people who are subject matter experts. You’ve got to be able to network – get people to work with you and help you. And give people thanks for what they do.”
Davis says she’s been a Libertarian since early on, when her mother, a Republican, handed her a quiz that identified a person’s political leanings. She says the party’s tenets are basic. “It’s conservative, about less government. You don’t infringe on property, you’re courteous and care about your neighbor. You don’t lie, you don’t hurt anybody and you keep your promises. Follow the Constitution; that’s the rule.”
A master gardener, Davis is on Buena Vista’s Beautification Advisory Board – which is a conduit for talking to locals. She admits that the COVID-19 pandemic has made door-to-door campaigning difficult, “but I talk to everybody — at the grocery store, the dollar store – wherever I see people.
“I’m an everyday person,” she says. “I go to church. I’m kind. One of my goals and objectives every day is to make someone laugh. I usually succeed in that. I always smile and thank people when they help me.”