Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Olathe businessman Greg Orman announces candidacy for U.S. Senate

OLATHE, KAN. ----- There will be an independent candidate in this year's U.S. Senate race in the State of Kansas.

Olathe, Kan., businessman Greg Orman announced his intention to run for the race on Monday. Orman graduated from Princeton University in 1991 and became involved in several businesses in Kansas.

He started Environmental Lighting Concepts, a business that designed energy efficient lighting systems for companies.

He later sold 70 percent of the business to Kansas City Power & Light, where he grew the business to make over a $1 billion annually.

More information from his campaign Website:
Hard work is a big part of the Orman family—Greg’s mother, Darlene Gates, raised Greg and his five siblings while working full time as a registered nurse. As her youngest children entered elementary school, Greg’s mother set an example for her children by going back to college to earn a bachelor’s degree, and despite the long work hours, she always made time to attend (and cheer) her children’s sporting events.

If the name ‘Orman’ is familiar, it’s because Greg’s father, Tim, opened a furniture store in Stanley, Kansas in 1971. Greg spent his teenage years working in the warehouse at the store, earning his first paycheck at 13. It was working at his father’s store when Greg learned that successful businesses take care of their employees, develop efficient, practical solutions to problems, and know when to take new directions. Those are the values—Kansas values—that Greg will bring to the U.S. Senate.

Greg now lives in Olathe with his wife, Sybil, and their two dogs, Lucy and Mala. Greg is involved with several businesses throughout the country, including Combat Brands in Lenexa, Kansas, and Sybil is earning her Ph.D in Education Leadership and Policy Studies program at the University of Kansas after spending 4 years teaching at the Turner School District in Kansas City, Kansas.

Disappointed in the broken partisan political system, Greg co-founded the Common Sense Coalition in 2010 to give a voice to unrepresented independents and other voters in the sensible middle and to seek common-ground solutions to the nation’s most difficult public policy issues.

Education and Business Background:

Greg graduated from Princeton University in 1991 with a degree in economics and joined the McKinsey & Company consulting firm shortly thereafter. In 1992, while at McKinsey, Greg started Environmental Lighting Concepts (ELC). ELC designed and installed energy efficient lighting systems for commercial and industrial companies. Orman left McKinsey in 1994 to run ELC full time.

As ELC’s CEO, Greg opened a second office in Kansas in 1995 before opening additional offices across the country. In November 1996, Greg sold 70% of ELC to Kansas City Power & Light. He then assumed management of KCP&L’s energy services operations and eventually the company’s entire portfolio of competitive businesses. He grew the business more than tenfold, from less than $100 million dollars to almost a billion dollars in annual revenue.

In 2004, Greg co-founded Denali Partners, LLC, and has been working to provide capital and management services to help small businesses grow since then.


Greg is active in the American Legion’s Boys’ State program—after being selected to attend the American Legion’s Boys’ Nation program in Washington, DC in 1986, Greg had the privilege of meeting President Ronald Reagan in the White House Rose Garden.

Greg credits much of his personal success to his participation in the American Legion’s program and has returned to Minnesota for over 25 years to deliver the annual commencement address to the Minnesota’s Boys’ State program.

Greg has served on the boards of the Kansas City Zoo and the Gala at the Glen for Cystic Fibrosis, and led the capital campaign for the YMCA’s Youth in Government program.