My name is Sarah Riggs Amico; I’m a proud business owner who employs thousands of union truckers and mechanics. I’m a Christian, a wife, a mom, and I believe that there’s no problem we can’t solve if we work together.
I grew up in a small rural town. From an early age, my family taught me the values that make our country great: family, faith, education, hard work, serving others, and being a good neighbor. My family members are Republicans and Democrats, veterans and nurses, pastors and factory workers, teachers and business owners. Political discussions during the holidays are lively – and respectful. We know that whatever political differences we may have, we are first and foremost Americans. I remember a time when politicians were the same way; they didn’t always agree with one another, but they could still work together to deliver results for the folks who were depending on them.
I went to public schools. The education I received, thanks to the teachers and staff who nurtured my hopes and dreams for the future, afforded me the opportunity to attend Washington & Lee University and earn my MBA from the Harvard Business School. Today, I choose to send my kids to public school in Cobb County because I believe in Georgia’s education system. I believe that all our kids should have the opportunity to reach their God-given potential.
I learned my values from my family and my faith, and I’ve done my best to apply them in my career. In the midst of the 2008 financial crisis, our family bought a struggling carhaul company near bankruptcy. Through the financial crisis – and the bankruptcies of two of our major customers – we grew from 120 employees in 2008 to over 3,000 employees now. We buy and fix businesses that most people think aren’t ‘fixable’. We’ve been successful because we decided to invest in our people, even when that wasn’t what all the other companies were doing. When other executives were cutting back on health care benefits, we chose to pay 100% of our employees’ health care premiums, including their spouses and family.
As the Executive Chairperson of Jack Cooper, I have learned that long-term growth and competitiveness come from investing in our people. In addition to paying for our employees’ health care, I introduced initiatives to hire veterans, establish an annual Volunteer Day program, and provide paid parental leave, because I understand the dignity of work and what a good paying job, with great benefits, means to families.
I want to do the same for Georgians. I want everyone to have access to quality, affordable health care, a great public school education, and an equal opportunity to build their American Dream. To do that, we are going to need a new kind of political leadership.
I’ve spent my career fixing problems people thought weren’t fixable. I’ve fought to make smart investments in our workers at Jack Cooper, to show that doing the ‘right thing’ is the best way to create growth and I’ll do the same for Georgia. Whether you are red, blue, or purple – we all deserve better than career politicians offering excuses for unimpressive results. There are no excuses when it comes to our state.
Like a lot of folks, I haven’t always been thrilled with what political parties have done to our country, and I’ve voted for the person I thought was best regardless of party. But when the Republicans started restricting opportunity instead of expanding it, cutting education instead of investing in it and abandoning civil rights instead of protecting them, it left me behind. Now I’m a proud Democrat.
I live with my husband, Andrea, and our two daughters, Ava and Sofia, in Kennesaw, Georgia. I serve on the board of PAWS Atlanta, the city’s oldest no-kill adoption center. I enjoy studying vocal music and I’m a big fan of the Falcons and Atlanta United.
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