Ingram announces candidacy for State Senate 31st District
By Christina Lindstrom
Long-time Durand area resident, Durand High School graduate, and former City of Durand police officer, Bill Ingram, has announced his candidacy for the State Senate 31st district.
After high school, Ingram obtained his pilot’s license.
Ingram earned his Bachelor’s Degree in business at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. He entered the Master’s program, but did not complete it.
Ingram obtained certification as a police officer, firefighter, and first responder in tech school.
Ingram served six years in the United States Air Force, and worked in the Office of Special Investigations, as well as a federal task force for worker’s compensation. He also ran a body guard team for officers at and above the rank of four-star general.
Ingram said his interest in politics began during his time working in over-the-road trucking. After retiring from the police department Ingram and his wife, Pam, bought a semi, and he said it gave them the opportunity to travel across America.
“I got Sirius Satellite Radio and got interested in the political channels,” he said. “While driving across the country, I was also able to talk to working Americans about problems facing our country. These are the same problems that face us right here in Wisconsin.”
Ingram said in talking to people around home about issues, he was told to do something about it.
“That’s when I found out it takes only two sheets of paper to run for president,” he said. “So, I painted my truck red, white, and blue, and turned in my paperwork.”
Ingram said he did a debate in Cincinnati.
“That’s what originally kicked off my political career,” he said. “It was so much fun. The people just want a politician who will do what they want.”
About one month before the election, Ingram said he took advantage of the publicity. In the 2008 presidential election, Ingram got 30 write-ins as an independent candidate. The next year, as a republican candidate, Ingram said he got 8,000 votes.
“The support of the party and name recognition was a huge factor,” he said.
On election day in 2008, Ingram turned in paperwork to run for governor. In May 2010, Ingram said he announced he was no longer running for governor, but was seeking a spot on the assembly.
“I picked up very valuable experience through those campaigns,” he said.
After getting involved with the Republican party, Ingram said he received a lot of support and help.
“Running for assembly was a good thing, but the way it was laid out, I didn’t have the resources to get into the proper area to campaign,” he said. “I wasn’t able to use my home school districts. Now, running for the State Senate, the school districts are in the 31st District.”
Ingram said at one point in his life, due to termination from a job, he chose to file bankruptcy.
“This was ultimately one of the best business decisions that I’ve made in my life, and I have no regrets,” he said.
Ingram appealed the termination and was reinstated about a year later, but the financial damage was irreversible, he said.
“The whole situation gave me a tremendous insight to the credit industry,” he said. “This industry is in need of some serious changes.”
Ingram said he is also working on a book to be titled “Incompetent Authority,” which he said will be a humorous, but serious look into the abuse of political power and trust within management.
Ingram said he believes in individual rights as long as they do not affect others.
“I believe more laws make more criminals and violators,” he said. “Laws also make life complicated. We need to greatly reduce and simplify our laws.”
Ingram said local rights are another area of concern.
“I believe we need to stop changing, and start fixing things,” he said.
Ingram also wants to focus on the constitution and amendments.
“I believe our constitution and amendment rights are being trashed,” he said.
Ingram said he would like to see more emphasis on local government and people.
“As population grows, the representatives get further and further away, and the people lose their voice,” he said. “I want to give that voice back, and listen to that voice.”
Ingram said he wants to work for the disabled and elderly people.
“They were promised benefits that are now being labled as entitlements,” he said. “That’s the first thing they want to take away, and it’s just plain wrong.”
Ingram said he enjoys working with Special Olympics fund raisers.
“I’m interested in what the people want to see fixed,” he said. “Today’s hot issues are being worked on now. By election time, there will be new issues.”
Ingram said he has vast experiences.
“I’m always picking up new things, and I’ve never really specialized at one thing,” he said. “I’m always looking for new experiences and new ways to help people.”
Ingram said he is here to serve and protect the people.
“I’m at another point in my life where I can serve and protect the people, from Madison,” he said.
Ingram noted a very special gift that very few candidates have.
“That is a real insight into the day to day frustrations, needs, and determination of the average working American citizen,” he said. “I’m running for Senate because I want to make things better.”
Ingram held an event February 12 at the Florian Gardens in Eau Claire to officially announce his candidacy for the State Senate 31st district.
The 31st District includes all of Pierce County. The incumbent is Democrat Kathleen Vinehout. Mel Pittman, a Pierce County Board Supervisor, announced his candidacy for the seat last year as a Republican.
Christina Lindstrom is editor of the Durand Courier-Wedge.