Politics & Trucking!

What do agriculture, crossing borders, energy, hazardous materials, security, and taxes have in common?

The trucking industry, of course!

“I am very concerned about the impact of excessive government regulation on the hard-working truck drivers – especially the individuals and independent operators,” Mike Howe said. He runs regular pieces focused on all the various issues that concern those in the trucking business from border crossing to Earth Day, energy prices, taxes, new tolls and traffic laws. “I try to bring issues to their attention and offer my commentary where appropriate.”

Mike works to educate those in the trucking industry about politics and advance their positions in public policy. 

“One of my first real jobs out of college was in the trucking industry, so I have long had an affinity for transportation issues,” Mike said. “My PolitiTruck.com site, bringing politics and trucking together, is a place where I share my writing for other trucking publications as well as the work I do independently.”


His work is even being published throughout international publications and in other languages. Desi Trucking, a Canadian publication, featured his May/June 2013 cover story article in English and Punjabi.

And just today Mike filed for the district 2 position of the Sequim, WA School Board.

“There are multiple reasons for me deciding to do this, the most important of which is that I have three children who are in or will be in the district so, I have a vested interest,” Mike said. “I am also very concerned about the future of our country and I believe quality education is what will bring future prosperity.  As a former college instructor I have seen the struggles some face as a result of not having the necessary skills and knowledge to excel at that level, so I hope to make a difference with that.  Lastly, with my background I believe I bring a unique skillset to the school board that can help it become even more effective in influencing state and federal policies.”

By day, Mike is the communications and government relations manager at Clallam County Public Utility District in the state of Washington.

The utility provides electricity, water, sewer, and telecommunications to approximately 30,000 customers, and Mike manages the overall communication efforts. 

“One of the major projects I am currently working on is educating the public and policy makers on the impacts of the state’s renewable portfolio standards [RPS], while also working to reform the mandates associated with the RPS to something more reasonable,” Mike said.

Mike is the chairman of the Washington Public Utility District Association’s Communication Committee and vice-chairman of its Government Relations Committee.  He has five children, a wife he is crazy about, and a grandchild who just turned two years old plus another one on the way.

He is an elected board member of the University of Wyoming Alumni Association. He is also former president of Baker County Chamber of Commerce in Oregon, and formerly an advisor to two Wyoming governors.

His work has garnered the attention of many.

In 2009, he received the Spotlight on Excellence Award for the best news story that year from the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. He is also the 2009, 2010, and 2011 recipient of the Excellence in Communications Award from the Northwest Public Power Association.

However, Mike’s proudest moment in his career was interviewing President George W. Bush, during both the 2000 and 2004 elections.

Mike hosts a radio program called “In The Booth” on KONP radio.  The show is syndicated to Forks, WA on two stations and airs Saturday from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. on Newsradio 1450 KONP radio in Port Angeles / Sequim. On Sunday, his show airs from 5 a.m. to 6 a.m. on KBDB Twilight 96.7 FM in Forks, and from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. on KFKB Forks Radio 1490 AM in Forks.

“On this show I bring on policymakers from around the state, nation, and even the globe to talk about issues of importance,” Mike said. “My guests tend to be conservative, but it is not a show with strictly conservative guests. Really the show is about bringing listeners information and guests these stations might not typically have.  Past guests have included  Vice President Dick Cheney, U.S. Sen. Alan Simpson, U.S. Congressman Tom Graves, numerous guests from the American Enterprise Institute, and more.”

In college Mike was chairman of College Republicans at the University of Wyoming, and that’s where he first learned of the Leadership Institute from a friend.

In March 1992 he took LI’s Youth Leadership School in Denver, Colorado.

“Leadership Institute training certainly helped me early in my career,” Mike said. “LI taught me how to win, and not just in politics.  I have applied the lessons of the Leadership Institute in my work as a lobbyist, advisor to two governors, radio host, writer, and volunteer.”

“Perhaps the best thing LI did for me was help foster my confidence," he said. "I remember sitting in the LI training and being around many great young leaders.  The comments they were making, concerns they were expressing, and outlook for the future were very similar to my own.”

A few years after the training, Mike won his campaign for state chairman of College Republicans in the state of Wyoming.

“Today, I still have my signed copy of the Laws of the Public Policy Process hanging in my office as well as the large, black three-ring binder from the Youth Leadership School training.” 

You too can be an effective LI Youth Leadership School graduate like Mike by registering now here.

“The Leadership Institute is the organization young conservatives should seek training from.  It is the organization that provides me hope for the future of America,” Mike shared. “Given the current state of politics, it is incredibly important we train and educate young conservatives how to win in any endeavor they take on.  LI is the organization that can help make this happen.”

Follow Mike on Twitter @TruckingDC for news and information on political trucking issues. Check out his PolitiTruck blog here, and his radio show online here.

Please congratulate and welcome Mike Howe as LI’s Graduate of the Week.

To nominate a Leadership Institute graduate or faculty member to be featured as LI's spotlight of the week, please contact LI's External Affairs Officer Lauren Day, formerly Lauren Hart, at Lauren@LeadershipInstitute.org.