Colorado Lt. Governor and Chief Operating Officer Donna Lynne announced today that she is actively exploring a run for governor in 2018.

“Today, as we celebrate what makes the 38th state special on Colorado Day, I’m committed to doing everything in my power to make sure it stays that way,” said Lynne, who has served in her current position since May of 2016. “For the last 15 months, I’ve been privileged to work with and help people in every Colorado county and have come to realize there is much more we can and must do to keep the state moving in the right direction.”

Lynne, 63, has spent more than half of her career in the public sector. In the private sector, she worked as an executive providing affordable health care to millions of Americans as well as serving on over 20 boards for both nonprofit and civic organizations.

“Lt. Governor and Chief Operating Officer Donna Lynne is one of the most talented people I have ever worked with,” said Gov. John Hickenlooper. “Her long record of exemplary success, both in business and in public service, more than earns her the right to run for Governor. Colorado is fortunate to have someone with Donna’s dedication and tenacity who wants to lead our state.”

As the state’s first-ever dual Lt. Governor and Chief Operating Officer, Lynne has led efforts to address the issues of health care affordability, accessibility, and quality. She launched key initiatives to increase accountability and transparency in government and to make government services more efficient and effective. And she brought renewed attention to education for all Coloradans.

“Given the current state of affairs in this country, I believe we need pragmatic leaders who care about people and are willing to put politics aside and get things done,” Lynne said. “I’ve spent my career helping people and leading big organizations — both in government and in the private sector. That’s the kind of experience we need right now.

An avid outdoor enthusiast, Lynne has climbed all of Colorado’s 14ers, participated in various bike rides throughout the state including Ride the Rockies and Pedal the Plains, and has skied at 29 of Colorado’s 30 ski areas (Echo Mountain, she’s coming for you!). The mother of three adult children, she lives in Denver with her husband Jim, who has two adult children.

Lynne said she expects to make a final decision on entering the Democratic primary by early September.