Johnny Ferry // Republican // Utah Senate District 19 (B+)
How have the arts, culture, and/or humanities impacted your life?
- Before I existed...my mom was art major at BYU. She passed her creative sense and love of art, music, and humanities to me as a young kid growing up in a hard-working environment on our family's cattle ranch. My dad always had a book in his hand and emphasized a broad spectrum of educational learning. Post-high school I served a Chinese-speaking mission to Toronto, Canada. Toronto is a multi-cultured melting pot of people from all over the world and this opened my eyes to global inspiration. I graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in Marketing Communications. After college, I took a position as a production worker at Honeyville Grain and moved my family to Southern California where we lived for twelve years. I eventually took part-ownership and applied creative, entrepreneurial decision making that helped grow our company to a 500 + employee, multi-state manufacturer of dry goods including Kodiak Cakes, Krusteaz, and Blue Diamond products. I currently serve as the VP of Business Development. I firmly believe happiness in life is tied to balance of social, mental, physical, and spiritual applications. Arts, culture and humanities are broadly sprinkled throughout each aspect of my life. Their importance comes full circle in the raising of my own children.
Utah's humanities and arts employ 123,000 Utahns, provide $4.4 billion in earnings, and $13.2 billion in sales. This is a larger economic impact than agriculture, mining, and real estate. Do you consider the arts and cultural sector an economic driver in Utah?
Fiscally responsible government investment in the arts and humanities (including humanities and arts education) means to me:
- Maintaining cultural balance through smart, fiscally sound decision making.
I support the following legislative items:
- Grants to be used for operations (jobs) as soon as possible
- Keeping emergency loans open to nonprofits
- Increasing availability of loans to cultural businesses (non-profit and for-profit)
- Fiscally responsible government investment in arts and humanities organizations.
- Facilitating partnerships between tourism and culture.
- Reducing regulations of creative businesses.
- Capital investment (in museums, performance/concert halls, studios, galleries, nonprofit office space, etc.).
- Percent for public art programs, which optionally designate 1% of government capital costs for public art
- Allowing municipalities to set design standards
- K-6 Students should have increased exposure to arts and humanities education
- 7-12 Students should have increased exposure to arts and humanities education
- I support the Beverley Taylor Sorenson Arts Learning Program which puts one arts specialist in most elementary schools
- I support the POPS (Professional Outreach Program in the Schools) which sends 13 professional arts organizations to all UT school districts
- I support the iSEE (Informal Science Educational Enhancement) which sends 10 professional science, zoological, and natural history organizations to all UT school districts
Anything else we should know about you?
- Johnny Ferry (42) is a lover of Utah, a native Utah business owner, an Executive, a Board Member, a lifetime rancher, a husband to a 2nd grade teacher and father of four. In politics, Johnny is a relentless Republican, promoter of individual freedom and volunteerism, builder of smart infrastructure, and seeker of sustainable economic growth. In business, Johnny is a 20-year energetic entrepreneur, ideation grower, and thrives as a team player and collaborator. Personally, Johnny enjoys a good book, travelling, sunsets on the farm, and dates with Jen (his 20-year sweetheart).
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