Nan Whaley speaks with two young people

Meet Nan

Leading Dayton through some of its biggest crises has prepared Nan Whaley to confront everything that’s wrong in Columbus — and build a better Ohio for all.

Falling in love with Ohio

Nan grew up in a small town in Indiana. She learned the values of hard work, strength, and resilience from her dad, a union autoworker who lost his job but never lost his dignity, and her mom, who went to work at the laundromat behind their house to help make ends meet. 

Back then, Ohio was where people went for opportunity, so she attended the University of Dayton, becoming the first person in her family to graduate from college. She met her husband, Sam, and fell in love with her adopted hometown, eventually running for City Commission and mayor. 

Nan and her husband, Sam, on a park bench with their dog
Nan Whaley speaks with an older man inside of a dry cleaners

Leading Dayton’s comeback

When Nan was first elected Mayor in 2013, Dayton was at a low point. The factories had moved out and the opioids had moved in. But in Dayton, folks don’t run away from their problems. 

Under her leadership, Dayton has turned a corner. She brought folks together to take on the community’s toughest challenges, including tackling the opioid crisis, cutting overdose deaths by half and saving hundreds of lives. She led the fight to take on a broken education system and provide quality pre-k to every three- and four-year-old in the city. Dayton has become vibrant again as new people and businesses move into the city. 

When you’re the mayor, you don’t have the luxury of saying, “that’s not my problem.” Over the last two years, Dayton has been tested again and again with crises like a KKK rally, a series of devastating tornadoes, and a senseless mass shooting that left 9 people dead. Each time, Nan stepped up and led her city through its hardest moments. 

Let’s build a better Ohio

Now, Nan is running for governor because she knows our state is fundamentally broken and Ohioans deserve better. The same special interests and corrupt politicians have been in charge for 30 years as our state has fallen further behind. Rich campaign donors get rewarded while the rest of us fall further behind. The only answer is a total overhaul. 

Nan knows we can build a better Ohio. An Ohio where one job is enough to provide for your family. An Ohio where your kids have real opportunities. An Ohio where everyone — no matter your zip code — can thrive.

Nan speaks with a man inside a manufacturing facility
Lt. Governor candidate Cheryl Stephens speaks with two adults

About Lieutenant Governor Candidate Cheryl Stephens

While growing up, Cheryl’s family lived across the country and around the world as they followed her father’s career in the Air Force. She considers herself lucky to have found a home in Ohio when her father retired to Wright Patterson Air Force Base outside of Dayton. Cheryl learned the importance of education from her mother, a nurse, and of the perseverance to pursue the American Dream from her father. 

Cheryl and Nan firmly believe that the American Dream should be within reach for all Ohioans. That’s why Cheryl has made building affordable housing and creating safe and healthy neighborhoods the focus of her career. 

She is currently the Chief Executive Officer of the East Akron Neighborhood Development Corporation (EANDC), which strives to strengthen communities by providing affordable housing and neighborhood revitalization. Cheryl is also the Councilmember for Cuyahoga County District 10, where she focuses on improving county services and increasing investment in local small businesses. Cheryl has previously served the residents of Cleveland Heights as a Councilmember and Mayor.

Let’s build a movement to bring change to Ohio.

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