Cronkite News Service
ARIZONA CORPORATION COMMISSION
Cronkite News Service
PHOENIX – Paul Newman says the lessons of growing up on a dairy farm have come in handy during 30 years of service as a lawyer and public servant.
“We knew the value of hard work and needing to get a job done,” said Newman, a Democrat seeking one of the three open seats on the Arizona Corporation Commission. “Being a child of the ’60s, we also had the influence of Kennedy’s call that we have a duty to work for our country, which inspired me.”
In addition to working as a lawyer and management consultant, Newman served for six years in the Arizona State House of Representatives. A Bisbee resident, he has served on the Cochise County Board of Supervisors since 2000.
Newman said having someone from outside of Maricopa County would help the Corporation Commission better reflect the state.
“For the last almost 30 years, there has not been someone on the board who has represented the people of southern Arizona,” Newman said. “As a result, their voices have not been heard or addressed as much as Maricopa’s.”
Newman grew up on the East Coast and attended college at the University of Maryland. He then earned master’s and law degrees in California before moving to Arizona in 1987.
Newman is running with Democrats Sandra Kennedy and Sam George, forming what they call the “solar team.” The candidates say Arizona is too reliant on coal-fired power plants and should do more to harness its abundant sunshine.
Newman said utilities haven’t done enough to harness solar, thinking it too expensive. He said solar will become more and more affordable in the coming years.
“Arizona right now is performing at a moderate standard when it comes with producing new energy sources, but in a state where it is sunny almost 300 days out of the year, we should be able to explore more alternatives like solar,” Newman said.
Another key issue for Newman is one that is becoming increasingly important outside of metropolitan areas: ensuring an adequate supply of clean water.
Newman said that oftentimes water suppliers in rural areas can’t afford to keep up with new technologies and equipment for purification and supply.
“Arizona’s growth has not kept up with creating a better water supply,” Newman said. “We need to take the lead in fixing the problem now because it is only going to get worse.”
Newman said he understands that he and fellow Democratic candidates wouldn’t be able to achieve all of their goals right away, but he said he’s willing to put in the work necessary.
“I know this is considered an unglamorous job, but here I am wanting to do the work, get my hands dirty,” Newman said. “I am just wanting to be heard.”
Professional Experience: Lawyer, management consultant
Public Service: Cochise County Board of Supervisors, 2001 to present; Arizona House of Representatives, 1993-99
Education: B.A. in Behavioral and Social Science, University of Maryland; MPA and Master in Judicial Administration, University of Southern California; J.D., Case Western School of Law