About Mark Welch
My name is Mark Welch and I’m a candidate for State Representative 52nd District which is Fairfield, Liberty and West Chester Townships. I’ve lived in the 52nd District (West Chester) since 1990 and my kids went all the way through Lakota schools.
I’ve seen good things and bad things in our district, but the reason I’m running is because I want to do my part as a fiscal conservative to make the 52nd District the most prosperous district in the state and to ensure we’re competitive, marketable AND sustainable – attracting great businesses and wonderful people!!
My wife, Karen, and I have owned SoZo HAIR & Spa (formally Bajon Salon & Spa) in West Chester for 20 years and I’m firmly convinced that we’re still in business today because of our fiscal conservatism. When the great recession of 2008 hit, there were a lot of small merchants that went out of business, probably in large part because they had too much debt and/or not enough savings. We’re still here, and even though the economy is doing really well, it’s still tough to stay in business as a small business owner.
I’ve worked my entire adult career in the private sector. I spent 23 years in corporate America in sales and sales management roles and 20 years as the owner of Bajon Inc dba SoZo HAIR & Spa. With the exception of my Naval Academy experience, my greatest lessons in leadership have been learned while I’ve been owner of SoZo HAIR. I’ve learned that people cannot be managed like “things”, that people must be valued and respected if you hope to achieve extraordinary results.
I remember when I was at the Naval Academy, running almost daily, by a poster in Bancroft Hall. The poster was a combat scene. Soldiers were running through battle with bombs exploding. At the top it read “There are some men you’d follow through hell” and at the bottom it read “and there are others you’d push in”. Leadership to me means:
- Always do the right thing, not the convenient thing,
- Care more about your people than you do for yourself,
- Never ask someone to do something you’re not willing to do yourself.
Owning a small business is not only a great responsibility, it’s also a huge wake up call. If you have employees, you have to learn how to get everyone moving in the same direction, even though everybody has different goals, agendas, work ethics, etc. When you have employees, you find the government has hundreds of laws that protect them in the workplace, but there is nothing in place to protect or insulate you as the business owner from poor negotiations, bad deals, changing laws, etc. You’re on your own to figure it out and go forward, or to fail and go down with the ship!
Having worked in several corporations, it’s easy to see that many different people are responsible for a lot of important things that all contribute to the success of the organization, but as a business owner, you’re responsible for all of them!
Running a successful and profitable business is hard enough without having to deal with endless forms, applications, laws and regulations that are foisted on us by our government. This is why I believe we need to limit the size and scope of government and prevent them from further intruding into both our personal and professional lives.
Our founding fathers recognized that governments can turn tyrannical, so they put safe guards in our Constitution to protect us. Personally, I think our Constitution is constantly being challenged, changed and encroached upon so that we’re slowly losing our country and our God given freedoms!
I also believe that capitalism and free enterprise are fundamental to our way of life and should be taught in our schools so that future generations of Americans can enjoy the same way of life that we and past generations have experienced. As your Conservative Voice, I want to continue to do my part to ensure Fairfield, Liberty and West Chester Townships remain financially secure and continue to be a wonderful place to live, work and own a business for generations to come!
“Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.” Martin Luther King
MARK WELCH’S POLITICAL RESUME
Position Sought – State Representative for Ohio’s 52nd District
- West Chester Township Trustee, 2014 – Present.
- Butler County Republican Party Central Committee
- Butler County Executive Committee
- Butler County for Trump Campaign
- Chairman, West Chester Township Zoning Resolution Review Committee 2011 – 2013
- Member (Owner) Kid Love Foundation, LLC Non-Profit 2017 – Present
- President & CEO Bajon Inc dba SoZo Hair & Spa 1999 – Present
- President & CEO SoZo Products 2007 – Present • Kaiser Optical Systems, Director of Sales North America 2000 – 2003
- Mettler Toledo, Account Development Mgr. 1995 – 2000
- Named Account Manager of the Year in 1996 and 1999.
- Received Outstanding Achievement Award in 1997.
- ATI Instruments, Technical Sales Engineer 1990 – 1995
- Received Outstanding Performance Award and inducted into the President’s Club in 1992.
- Rookie of the Year Award 1991.
- Mettler Instruments, Thermal Specialist – Materials Characterization
- Salesman of the Year 1986. • Rookie of the Year 1985.
- Exceeded 1988 sales goal by 190% of target.
- Exceeded both the 1989 and 1990 sales targets.
- Won various promotional incentive packages offered by management that resulted in monetary and travel bonuses.
- University of Cincinnati 1977 – 1980.
- Bachelor of Science Chemical Engineering o Minor studies in Business Administration
- United States Naval Academy (Annapolis, MD) 1975 – 1977.
- Studies in Mechanical Engineering and Naval Tactics and Strategies
- Xerox Professional Selling Skills I, II and III
- Xerox Time and Territory Management
- Sales Concepts ‘Social Recognition’ Program
- VITO (Very Important Top Officer) Selling Strategy
- Franklin Covey Values & Goals Training, Time & Territory Management
- Congressional Appointment to United States Naval Academy
- Scholarship Army ROTC
- Scholarship Navy ROTC
- Danforth Award for Leadership
- National Honor Society
Organizations and Boards I have served on
- West Chester Hospital Advisory Board
- West Chester/Liberty Chamber Alliance Board
- West Chester / Liberty Community Foundation Key Event
- Mercy Fairfield Hospital 5th Floor Initiative and Birthing Center Fund Raising Committees
- Butler County Republican Party
- Citizen’s for Community Values (endorsed)
A Brief Personal History
I was born in Cincinnati, OH the second oldest of six siblings.
My lifelong dream was to be a military test pilot, become an astronaut and be a U. S. Senator like my hero John Glenn. I worked hard in high school and received the scholarships mentioned above. I chose to go to the Naval Academy.
While there I discovered I couldn’t be in the flight program because I had no depth perception (binocular disparity). I left the Naval Academy after about two (2) years, enrolled in the engineering program at the University of Cincinnati and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering.
I spent 23 years in corporate America selling capital instrumentation to the pharmaceutical, fine chemical and specialty chemical industries. I moved to West Chester in 1990 and still live in the same home.
As a lifelong conservative, I have been actively supporting conservative causes and candidates in our community
I also support numerous local charitable causes. My wife and I have held many fundraisers that focus on children – St. Baldrick’s (we both shaved our heads for Kids Cancer Research), Children’s Hospital, Dragonfly Foundation, SoZo Drug Free Kids and Kid Love Foundation – raising over $100,000 over the years.
As a West Chester Township Trustee, I have been a conservative voice on the board, fighting hard for fiscal responsibility, smaller governments and allowing free markets and free people to prosper.