Dayton businessman to challenge Turner for House district

A Dayton-based entrepreneur announced Tuesday that he will challenge U.S. Rep. Mike Turner-R in 2014.

“It’s all about a new voice,” said Russ Gottesman during a campaign event at Patterson Homestead on Brown Street. “It’s time for a new approach.”

Gottesman was surrounded by fellow Democratic office holders during the brief event and was introduced by Ohio Sen. Fred Strahorn and Dayton mayoral candidate Nan Whaley, who applauded Gottesman and his wife Katie for moving to Dayton from Chicago to start their business.

“Taking a bet on Dayton is what Russ and Katie really did,” Whaley said.

Gottesman, the founder of Dayton-based Commuter Advertising, said there was too much gridlock in Congress, with not enough representatives willing to work across the political parties. He said Turner was “clearly not part of the solution,” adding that “No one should be in a position for 11 years and have so little to show for it.”

A spokesman for Turner, who represents Ohio’s 10th congressional district, said that Gottesman’s criticism was baseless.

“Since he’s new to the community, it’s easy to understand why he may not be familiar with Congressman Turner’s accomplished record of work on behalf of southwest Ohio,” said Tom Crossman. “Congressman Turner looks forward to focusing on the work of protecting jobs at Wright-Patt, expanding economic opportunities for the region, and legislating across the aisle on the issue of sexual assault in the military — not electoral politics.”

Gottesman launched Commuter Advertising in 2008, a Dayton company that specializes in mass transit advertising. He and his wife live in Dayton with one child and another due this month.

Gottesman has a master’s in Business Administration degree from DePaul University, sits on the advisory board of the University of Dayton’s Crotty School of Entrepreneurship and will join UD’s business school this year as an adjunct professor teaching entrepreneurship and fundraising for new business owners. This will be his first run for elective office.

More than 40 people attended the campaign kickoff, including a number of representatives from labor unions. Gottesman pointed out that his father, who was present, was a union electrician.

The 10th congressional district represents residents in Montgomery and Greene counties.

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