We had the opportunity interview Nix, recently. Here is what she had to say:
Can you tell us about your personal and professional background? Family? Where did you grow up/go to school? What did you do before getting involved with politics?
Nix: I grew up in Palmyra, Missouri, as the second daughter of a very middle class, Catholic family. My parents worked hard to provide for my sister and me. I was Student Council President in both middle school and high school.
I went to Northeast Missouri State University (now Truman State) in Kirksville, MO, and received a B.S. with double majors in Marketing and Accounting in 1992. I sat for and passed the CPA exam 6 mos later and have spent 12 years working in accounting and banking.
Why do you consider yourself a Conservative/Republican? What issues are most important to you?
Nix: As an accountant and banker, fiscal issues are most important to me. I consider myself a Conservative/Republican because I don't believe in citizens being dependent upon their government from cradle to grave. The United States Constitution was built upon this concept. The more entitlements our society provides to its citizens, the more they will demand. This is not be financially sustainable over the long term.
The current levels of government debt and spending are completely unacceptable.
As a long time volunteer of many community service organizations, I believe in most cases people will take care of people. Yet, there must be a safety net in place, especially for children and the elderly. Safety nets go too far, in some cases, and as a result, the entitlement class grows.
There is also duplication of services and too much bureaucracy. We need smaller, more efficient government, and people should be able to keep their own hard-earned money instead of many times paying for the poor choices of others. There should be adequate regulation to keep the "winners" in our society in check, so they cannot take advantage of the poor.
Why did you decide to become personally involved with politics?
Nix: My dad successfully ran for county office when I was in high school, and it left an impression on me. However, I never took it seriously until I had three children of my own and became more interested in my community. I served a term on City Council and learned a great deal in the process. Since 2007, I have been the County Treasurer and am still learning a great deal about government, elections, and most of all, human nature.
What are some of the things you have accomplished as Treasurer and as a city council member?
Nix: When I was Vice Mayor in 2003, I managed a bond issue campaign for new schools. For ten weeks, I worked on that campaign full time, and our city now has 6 new and 2 renovated elementary school buildings. This was the first time I realized I could truly make a difference.
Also on City Council, I led the initiative for the Direct Election of the Mayor and town hall meetings called "Conversations with Council," which continue still today. My term on council was tumultuous, as our city has been in drastic decline with thousands of jobs going oversees or being eliminated. Only recently my city was named one of the "Ten Most Dying Cities" in America, so one can imagine how difficult it has been for all council members the past several years.
As Treasurer, we have cut 30% of our staff and over 20% of our budget, with no loss in service or quality. Through working with the State of Ohio, we have hosted outreach programs to people in foreclosure, as well as offered Seniors & Money and Rebuilding Credit seminars. Through the rough economy, we have kept our delinquencies within a manageable and stable percentage. We have bid out banking services, saving taxpayers thousands in fees.
You're considering a run for the Butler County Board of Commissioners. What would you like to accomplish at that position? What sort of changes would you like to see in Butler County?
Nix: I am currently seeking the endorsement of the Butler Co Republican Party to be County Commissioner. The endorsement would be the nomination for the Primary in May 2010 and the General Election in Nov 2010. This is a long process!
If successful, I would like to work to help get Butler County back on firm financial footing, just as I did during my tenure on Middletown City Council. I would like to promote regionalization, transparency throughout the county, and establish an Office of Management and Budget, that would provide accountability for all taxpayer dollars that run through the county.
Butler County has been ripe with scandals and nepotism, and I would like to be the Commissioner that restores faith in public servants to Butler County residents.
Do you have political aspirations beyond the local level?
Nix: My children are still young enough (14, 13, and 11) that I don't spend a great deal of time contemplating my future past the next five years. I will keep working hard and learning, and believe opportunities will present themselves, as they always have. I've never been one to shy away from opportunity. Having said that, I don't see myself reaching for a higher office for another 8 years.