Norton visits Summit County |

Norton visits Summit County

SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County was one of numerous stops Republican Lieutenant governor candidate Jane Norton made Friday to introduce herself to Coloradans.

Norton is incumbent Gov. Bill Owens’ running mate.

Her candidacy is unusual for two reasons. This is the first time in the state’s history the governor could choose his running mate, and she is the first Republican female candidate for the position.

When Owens announced his decision to choose Norton for the position, he said, “she shares my commitment to putting families and taxpayers first.”

“I have to tell you, women all over the state are really excited,” Norton said.

Norton has known Owens for almost two decades, she said, and she has been working closely with him for the past several years.

“I just really admire his values – he leads by example,” she said.

Owens appointed Norton as the executive director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.

As executive director, Norton has managed a staff of more than 1,000, with a budget of $280 million.

Her accomplishments include a variety of health and environmental protection programs, she said, including health care for low-income families.

She never envisioned herself as a politician.

“I’ve worked for candidates I believed in, but to be a candidate myself … it’s a bit overwhelming,” she said. “I’m just very surprised and humbled. It’s a privilege.”

If Owens is re-elected, she will work hard to learn the issues and gain people’s support.

“I think he really does deserve a second term and is working hard for people’s continued support,” Norton said.

The pair’s primary goal is to keep Colorado one of the nation’s treasures, she said.

“(Colorado) is a very, very special place,” Norton said. “I know the governor is committed to keeping it special.”

Norton said she and Owens will work to promote smart growth, protect the environment and health, improve education and transportation and provide tax relief for citizens.

“I think we can make a really good partnership,” she said.

Norton is originally from Grand Junction. She graduated from Colorado State University with a bachelor of science degree in health sciences and earned a master’s degree in management at Regis University. She is married to Mike Norton, a former U.S. Attorney of Colorado. They have two children, Lacee and Tyler Artist.

Lu Snyder can be reached at 970-668-3998, ext. 203 or

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