We came across another compliance officer this week running for public office: Jessica McClure, an environmental compliance executive running for Congress in Nebraska.
McClure was originally a chemist by trade, then went to law school and graduated in 2013. She has been working in environmental, FDA, and customs compliance ever since. She also proudly says she was a member of the Society of Corporate Compliance & Ethics until she took a break from work to run for office full-time.
Radical Compliance has been keeping tabs on ethics & compliance officers seeking state or national public office this year; McClure is the fourth one we’ve found. Also seeking office have been Gene Truono, former compliance officer at PayPal who ran for Senate in Delaware (lost the Republican primary in September); Richard Painter, former ethics counsel in the Bush Administration running for Senate in Minnesota (lost the Democratic primary in August); and Luke Brussel, running for a seat on the New York Supreme Court (eliminated in a primary round earlier this fall).
McClure is running as a Democrat, so you can guess her stance on most public policy issues. She is especially vocal about access to healthcare, since she spent much of 2016 caring for a sick child with a digestive disorder, only to watch her local congressman vote to repeal Obamacare in 2017. “I waited and waited for a politically experienced candidate to declare,” McClure says on her campaign website. “When none showed, I realized that no one was going to work as hard as I will for our health care.”
McClure probably has an uphill climb. She is running against Jeff Fortenberry, the incumbent Republican who has held Nebraska’s first congressional district since 2005. Fortenberry won re-election in 2016 with 69.5 percent of the vote, and the district voted for Donald Trump over Hillary Clinton by a 58-36 percent margin. As of Sept. 30, Fortenberry had $696,000 in the campaign warchest compared to McClure’s $57,000. The district includes most of the eastern third of the state: not Omaha, but the state capital of Lincoln and several adjoining counties.
Still, Radical Compliance isn’t here to favor one candidate because of political affiliation or cash on hand — we’re here to favor the candidate who works in ethics and compliance, since it’s great training for people to be thoughtful elected officials. So we wish McClure the best and give her credit for fighting despite daunting odds.
If you know any other compliance professionals running for office this fall, let us know!
By the way, this McClure is not the same Jessica McClure who gained fame in 1987 as a toddler trapped in a well in Texas.