Secretary Husted's Biography
Jon Husted is the 53rd and current Ohio Secretary of State, a position he has held since 2011. In this role, he serves as the state’s top election official and has made Ohio a place where it is easy to vote and hard to cheat. Secretary Husted is also responsible for supporting entrepreneurs wishing to do business in the Buckeye State and has overseen a dramatic improvement in customer service, which has led to a record number of new businesses filing with the state each year since he was elected Secretary of State.
In April 2017, Secretary Husted was honored by the Ohio Chapter of Americans for Prosperity with the Taxpayers’ Torch Award for his exceptional stewardship of taxpayer dollars and demonstrating conservative leadership in bringing about a more efficient, more effective government. In 2013, the Washington Post’s blog “The Fix” named him one of their “Top 10 Rising Stars in America.” Secretary Husted has also been recognized by the Association of the United States Army for his work to help military voters and their families cast ballots, no matter where they are in the world.
Prior to being elected to statewide office in 2010, Secretary Husted served in the Ohio Senate and the Ohio House of Representatives, including as Speaker of the House for four years.
Raised in Montpelier, Ohio, Secretary Husted learned early in life the importance of faith, family and hard work. These values served as the foundation on which he has built his life.
Secretary Husted earned both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Dayton, where he also was an All-American defensive back on the 1989 Division III National Championship Football Team. Following graduation, he remained in Dayton to serve as Vice President for Business and Economic Development at the Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce.
Above all his responsibilities, Secretary Husted considers his most important role as that of husband to his wife, Tina, and father to his children, Alex, Katie and Kylie.
Throughout his time in public service, Secretary Jon Husted has been committed to conservative principles, lower taxes and the elimination of wasteful spending.
A commitment that was clearly demonstrated in the most recent state budget when Secretary Husted successfully championed a proposal eliminating the need for any tax dollars to run the Secretary of State’s Office for the last two years of his term – saving taxpayers nearly $5 million. This effort was made possible thanks to all the work Secretary Husted has done during his tenure to lower costs and streamline operations. These efforts have included cutting costs by $14.5 million during his first term – a 16 percent decrease during a time when state spending increased by 17 percent – and reducing the office’s staff by 40 percent to date.
Secretary Husted also has the distinction of being the only statewide officeholder in 2015 to request a cut, not an increase in his annual budget.
While serving as House Speaker, Secretary Husted spearheaded the passage of the most fiscally conservative budget in 40 years, which included landmark reforms to the state tax code and the largest income tax cut in Ohio’s history.
Since his election as Secretary of State in 2010, Secretary Husted has revolutionized the way the state interacts with businesses by establishing Ohio Business Central, an online portal where all Ohio businesses can now be formed and maintained through a paperless process, reducing the time required for starting a new business. The process also generated savings for the office, which Secretary Husted returned to entrepreneurs by cutting the costs associated with forming a business by 21 percent, making Ohio the lowest-cost state in the region to start and maintain a business.
In 2015, Secretary Husted partnered with Google’s “Let’s Get Our Cities on the Map” to put additional tools into the hands of new and growing Ohio businesses. The initiative pairs entrepreneurs with tools to build a website, reserve a free domain name, have their office locations registered with Google’s map and search features, and get advice from industry experts.
In 2016, Secretary Husted partnered with the Cleveland Sight Center to run the business services call center. The results have been dramatic as 20 percent more calls are now being answered, wait times have been reduced by 96 percent and hours of operation have been expanded.
Secretary Husted made it easier to vote in Ohio by establishing uniform, statewide rules so every voter would be treated equally, regardless of where they live. This included the first-ever statewide absentee ballot application mailing in 2012 to raise awareness for the state’s expansive opportunities for casting a ballot.
Secretary Husted has also taken important steps toward improving the accuracy of Ohio’s voter rolls. This work has been highlighted by removing over a half-million deceased voters and eliminating over 1.6 million duplicate registrations. He is also the state’s first chief election official to conduct statewide voter fraud reviews to identify instances of fraud and hold those guilty accountable, which includes any non-citizens who try to register to vote and cast a ballot. These steps have helped maintain the integrity of Ohio’s elections.
Recognizing how technology could be used to further improve the voting experience in Ohio, Secretary Husted worked to bring online voter registration to Ohio. In January 2017, online voter registration became a reality in Ohio after Secretary Husted successfully secured legislative approval. The new system is expected to save millions of dollars for local governments while making registration more secure and easier for voters. This new service is similar to the Online Change of Address System Secretary Husted launched in his first term, which has already been used by nearly a half-million voters.
Secretary Husted’s Administration has also made it easier for military families to cast a ballot, no matter where their service takes them, through the establishment of the Military Ready-to-Vote and Ohio Voter Passport programs, which together earned Ohio the All-Star State designation by the Military Voter Protection Project.
Having been adopted as a child, Secretary Husted has been a longstanding advocate for adoption and helping to pair children with healthy and loving families.
When serving as House Speaker, Secretary Husted championed the passage of the Ed Choice and Choose Ohio First Scholarship Programs in order to provide students with opportunities outside of the classroom and encourage participation in the STEMM disciplines of science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine.
Drawing on his own experience as a student athlete, Secretary Husted has also been a champion for making extracurricular activities available to all students in school, believing that they play an important role in the educational experience. Through participation in sports, band and clubs, students learn important life skills, such as hard work, leadership and teamwork.