The president of Rose Pest Solutions aims to give small business – and PCOs – a voice in Washington
Bob Dold’s professional career the past six years might be best described as bittersweet. On the one hand, it’s been fulfilling for Dold to lead Northfield, Ill.-based Rose Pest Solutions — one of the nation’s oldest pest control companies — and have the opportunity to work alongside parents Bob (affectionately known as “The Chief”) and Judy Dold. On the flip side, Dold’s watched with frustration as government actions have made life difficult for small business by enacting what he calls “overreaching federal regulations and mandates that stifle investment and job creation.”
Fed up with the status quo and confident he can bring about change in Washington, Dold has decided to make a run for Congress. On Sept. 14, Dold officially announced he was seeking the Republican nomination for Congress from the 10th District in Illinois. “Washington needs a good dose of small business common sense,” he said. “The spirit and drive of small business is not being represented in Washington today.”
During his Sept. 14 speech, Dold recounted challenges facing him and other small business owners and committed to making their voices heard in Washington. “I seek to represent the 10th district as a small business owner who knows the pressures of meeting a payroll, of finding the necessary capital to invest in technology and equipment, and materials to make our business grow, and the need to provide benefits to those with whom we work.”
Dold’s other reason for running is more personal. He and wife Danielle are parents to three young children — Harper (7), Bobby (5) and Honor (2) — and he is concerned that government spending is “leveraging the future of our country for our children.”
“I decided to make a run for Congress largely because I was so disturbed by what was going on in Washington,” Dold said. “We’re talking about a government that has decided to nationalize industry, beginning with the banking industry, then the auto industry and now health care. It’s run up a $1.7 trillion dollar deficit. It’s got a debt that right now is looking to double in the next decade.”
Dold’s vision for America is a return to the values represented by President Ronald Reagan — smaller government, lower taxes, personal responsibility and a strong national defense.
A LIFELONG INVOLVEMENT. The Dold family has long been active with the GOP. The Chief has been a precinct captain for more than 35 years and Bob got his first taste of politics as a child, delivering literature throughout the precinct. He gained experience with national politics early in his career, working in the White House during the first Bush administration.
Traveling throughout the U.S. and abroad, Dold set up meetings for both President George H.W. Bush and Vice President Dan Quayle. “I was able to meet and interact with a variety of people. I also had an opportunity to study a wide range of topics with a ‘different set of glasses.’ These experiences impacted me and shaped the political philosophies that I have today.”
After earning his law degree, Dold returned to Washington in the mid-1990s to work for the House Government Reform and Oversight Committee.
Dole took a break from politics in the late 90s, first working as a manager for Cable & Wireless before returning to Rose Pest Solutions in 2003. But he’s remained active politically and has served as a local precinct captain since 2000.
WHY NOW? Oftentimes, citizens will choose to step out of the public sector and into politics when it is an opportune time both personally and professionally. That’s not the case for Dold, who has a young family and runs an active business. “It’s really not an opportune time for me and for the business. We are trying to grow the business and move forward, but you can’t complain about the process unless you are willing to step up and be a part of the process,” he said. “It’s not a case of ‘Now is the perfect time to run because the business is in great shape and should be able to run by itself.’”
Dold said he is committed full-time to the campaign, but he’ll continue to serve as president of Rose Pest Solutions. The company has made several adjustments to make this schedule work. For example, Dold said The Chief is now more involved in the day-to-day activities and managers from the company’s various offices are stepping up to ensure the business runs smoothly.
While the timing might not be perfect personally and professionally, it just might be politically. The congressional seat Dold is seeking currently is occupied by Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), but he’ll be vacating it in order to make a run for the Senate. Dold said he considers Kirk a friend and would not have challenged him. The 10th District is a highly-educated, Democratic-leaning (61 percent voted for Obama in the ’08 Presidential election) district but it has been held by Republicans since 1980.
“I think the type of Republicans that have had success here are like me — fiscally conservative and socially more moderate,” Dold said. “I think it’s definitely a more moderate district and the Republicans that have held the seat have somewhat mirrored the district.”
So what’s next for Dold? At press time, Dold said he is concentrating on building a grass-roots organization. He’s introducing himself to as many people as he can, including elected leaders and officials, and sharing his vision. He also wants to hear from as many constituents as possible to gain a greater understanding of issues that concern them the most. And yes, fundraising certainly is an important part of the process. Dold said his goal is to raise $650,000 before the February primary.
“We’re looking for like-minded business people and citizens – both from inside and outside our industry – for support,” Dold said. “I certainly hope for industry support because I’ll be working on issues that directly impact our businesses.”
Learn more about Dold’s campaign at www.doldforcongress.com.
The author is Internet editor of www.pctonline.com.