Dr. Amy Acton, former director of the Ohio Department of Health, announced April 6 she will not run for the U.S. Senate in 2022.
In a news release, Acton said although it’s a “tremendous honor” to be asked to consider a run for the seat held by Sen. Rob Portman, R-Cincinnati, who is not seeking re-election, she will not enter the race.
“Please know I am deeply grateful for the outpouring of support from my fellow Ohioans, and from across the country,” Acton said in a statement. “I especially wish to express my heartfelt appreciation to all who have worked quietly behind the scenes to help me consider this path. While I am not entering the race for U.S. Senate, I recognize there is a genuine longing for a fresh approach to leadership that is honest, collaborative and empowering. Ohioans – do not accept anything less from your elected officials. Our leaders’ words and actions matter. We must set the bar higher.”
Acton stepped down from her position as vice president of Human:Kind at The Columbus Foundation in February to consider running for the Senate seat.
She also said in the statement that this moment in history calls on everyone “regardless of our politics, to address the pressing issues facing our families and communities.”
“In the wake of the economic, racial and health crises of 2020, what is at stake is nothing less than the heart and soul of our country,” she stated. “What kind of nation do we aspire to co-create? We must recognize the opportunity inherent in our mutual vulnerability, our undeniable interdependence and our shared humanity.”
The statement continued:
“Let our future honor the dignity of true public service and citizenship. I know many of us are tired of the vitriol and hate. We are weary from the battle. No one has gone untouched and much has been exposed and revealed. Yet as we cautiously re-emerge this spring, we dare to hope that a new way is possible. The opportunity for repairing and reimagining is at hand: a rebirth for ourselves, our relationships and for the institutions of our civil society. What happens next isn’t the sole province of our elected officials. It is up to all of us. We must co-create an Ohio that ensures the enduring cultural values of kindness and justice for all.
“Ohioans, it has been my privilege to witness your courage, determination and resiliency. And your heartfelt compassion. Don’t stop now. The leader we all wish we had is you. In all walks of civic life, we will demand equality of voice and representation. We will empower our citizens to vote and participate in community institutions by breaking down the barriers that block them. And we will build bridges across our differences and divides.
“We will inspire a culture of commitment to one another. Together, may we act on kindness, not fear. Love, not hate.”