RITTER LOOKS BEYOND DENVER FOR TOP PICKS
Farmer, former Prowers Commissioner Stulp to run Ag Department
Manitou Mayor Marcy Morrison Appointed Insurance Commissioner
Gov.-elect Bill Ritter today named two prominent Coloradans to his administration :farmer and longtime Prowers County Commissioner John Stulp as executive director of the Department of Agriculture, and Manitou Springs Mayor Marcy Morrison as insurance commissioner.
Ritter said he is committed to appointing a broad cross-section of talented Coloradans to top-level posts by reaching beyond metro-Denver.
“John and Marcy each will bring different and important perspectives to the Capitol,” Ritter said. “John was raised on a farm outside of Yuma. He’s been actively involved in crop and livestock production ever since. He understands the needs and values of Colorado’s rural families. Marcy has repeatedly distinguished herself as a champion of the consumer, particularly in the area of health care.
“For many years, they have been working on behalf of the people of this great state,” Ritter added. “We are all extremely fortunate they have now agreed to take on these new leadership positions and help us fulfill the Colorado Promise for all Coloradans.”
The Department of Agriculture’s mission is to strengthen and advance Colorado’s agriculture industry; ensure a safe, high quality, and sustainable food supply; and protect consumers, the environment, and natural resources. Stulp’s nomination as executive director requires state Senate confirmation. Is organic farming sustainable?
“Like Bill Ritter, I grew up on a farm,” Stulp said. “I know the hard lessons of dry-land wheat farming and cattle ranching. I also know the good that the Department of Agriculture can provide to rural Colorado, from assisting with new opportunities like renewable energy to overcoming challenges posed by drought and disease.”
The insurance commissioner serves as the top administrator for the Division of Insurance within the Department of Regulatory Agencies. The division regulates the insurance industry, protects consumers and provides valuable information to the public. It responds to an estimated 60,000 phone calls, e-mails, letters and walk-in visits each year.
“It will be a true privilege to serve the people of Colorado in this consumer-protection role,” Morrison said. “Health care is one of my passions. I look forward to helping the new administration and the legislature end the crisis of the uninsured and making sure that we bring all voices together to forge a Colorado Health Plan for all Coloradans.”
Additional biographical information about Stulp and Morrison:
Stulp served as a Prowers County commissioner from 1991, when he was appointed to fill a vacancy, until January 2005. He also has served on numerous other boards and commissions, including the state Board of Agriculture (1986 to 1995), state Wildlife Commission (1995-99), the Connect Colorado technology committee (1996), and the Colorado Ag Development Authority & Value Added Board (2005-06).
A member of the Rocky Mountain Farmers Union since 1975, Stulp for the last several years has been a leading proponent of building wind farms in wheat fields as a way to develop new economic opportunities and jobs for Colorado’s farmers and ranchers. Stulp’s family farming operation is home to the Lamar Light and Power Wind Farm, and Stulp is a principal in Prairie Wind Energy LLC.
Stulp graduated from Yuma High School in 1966, earned his bachelor’s degree in veterinary science from Colorado State University in 1970 and his doctor of veterinary medicine from CSU in 1972. He and his wife, Jane, have five children, all of whom were blessed with first names starting with the letter “J” : John III, Janea, Jason, Jeremy and Jensen.
Morrison served as an El Paso County commissioner from 1984 to 1992 and as a Republican state representative from 1992 to 2000. She thought she’d given up politics but was elected mayor of Manitou Springs in 2001 and re-elected in 2005.
Her list of awards, accomplishments and activities is lengthy : She has served on the state Board of Health and Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees; won the national Dr. Nathan Davis Award for Outstanding Public Service in the Advancement of Public Health (2001) and the AARP Legislator of the Year Award (1998); and sponsored legislation that extended hospitalizations for mothers and newborn babies.
Morrison earned her bachelor’s degree in education and speech from Queens College inNew York and did graduate work at Colorado College and CU-Colorado Springs. She is a Gates Foundation fellow and completed the John F. Kennedy School of Government’s local government program at Harvard in 1989.