|Member of the Ohio Senate
from the 27th district
January 3, 2011
|Preceded by||Kevin Coughlin|
April 18, 1979 |
Akron, Ohio, U.S.
|Residence||Hudson, Ohio, U.S.|
|Alma mater||The Ohio State University (B.S.)|
|Service/branch||United States Army|
|Years of service||1998–2007|
|Rank||Sergeant First Class|
|Unit||101st Airborne Division
19th Special Forces Group
|Awards||Bronze Star Medal|
Frank LaRose (born April 18, 1979) serves the citizens of Ohio's 27th Senate district which includes Wayne County as well as portions of Stark and Summit Counties. He serves as chairman of the Ohio Senate’s Transportation, Commerce and Labor Committee and sits on the Agriculture, Education, Financial Institutions, Government Oversight and Reform, Insurance, State and Local Government, and Ways and Means Committees. Senator LaRose, a decorated Army Veteran who served in the U.S. Special Forces as a Green Beret, resides in Hudson, OH
Frank LaRose, Jr., born at Akron City Hospital, grew up in Copley Township in Summit County, Ohio. He developed his strong work ethic and sense of responsibility at a young age while working on a small family-owned farm in northeastern Ohio. From an early age, he showed an inclination for leadership and dedication to his community, earning the rank of Eagle Scout, the highest award given by the Boy Scouts of America. His scout leader, a World War II veteran, was his inspiration to pursue a career defending his fellow citizens. Following his graduation from Copley High School, he fulfilled his life-long dream by enlisting in the United States Army with the 101st Airborne and eventually serving in the U.S. Special Forces as a Green Beret. Over the course of his decade in uniform, during which he was stationed throughout the globe, LaRose received numerous commendations and honors, including the Bronze Star for his service as a Sergeant First Class in Iraq with the U.S. Special Forces.
After returning from Iraq, LaRose married Lauren Kappa and graduated from The Ohio State University with a Bachelor of Science in Consumer Affairs and a minor in Business Administration. LaRose continues to serve his community as a board member of the Ohio Historical Society and as the Juniot Vice Commander of the Fairlawn Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW). He is also a member of the executive board for the Great Trail Council, Boy Scouts of America. He lives in Hudson with his wife, Lauren, their three daughters, Hadley, Ellison, and Lainey, and their dog Rosie.
November 2010 Ohio Senate Election
LaRose had never run for elected office, let alone held office, when he pulled off the noteworthy feat of winning an Ohio Senate seat in his first election. He handily defeated Democrat and Summit County Councilman Frank Comunale in the 27th District, a Democratic-leaning district. LaRose edged out Comunale 56.5% to 43.5%. LaRose’s electoral success was attributed to a combination of old-fashioned campaigning, such as door-to-door visits, and the use of Facebook and other social media. He and his supporters knocked on 22,000 doors, appeared at more than 400 public events and made more than 9,100 phone calls. LaRose ran on the promise of balancing the budget, "but not on the backs of the middle class." An Akron Beacon Journal Article quoted then Senate president pro tempore Tom Niehaus, who was about to become Senate president, describing LaRose as “very organized, methodical and relentless in his campaigning” and said, “He will be a person who will help us teach other candidates how to effectively campaign."
Ohio Senate (2011 - present)
Since joining the Ohio Senate in 2011, LaRose has distinguished himself as an active legislator who has championed innovative policy solutions in several complex areas while trying to increase civility in politics. Governing the States and Localities, a publication dedicated to covering politics, policy, and management for state and local government leaders, named Senator Frank LaRose a “State Legislator to Watch” in its January 2014 edition. Governing stated that the lawmakers chosen for this year’s recognition “have shown a keen ability to strike alliances across party lines,” or have “racked up significant accomplishments during their time in office.” 
For the 130th General Assembly, LaRose was named chair of the Public Safety, Local Government and Veterans Affairs Committee, and vice-chair of the Public Utilities Committee. He served as a member of the Transportation Committee, the State Government Oversight and Reform Committee, the Finance Committee, the Criminal Justice Committee, and the Agriculture Committee. Additionally, LaRose also served as a member of the Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review, which is composed of members of both the Senate and House and is responsible for reviewing administrative rules proposed by state agencies, departments, boards and commissions. He has also been appointed to the Clean Ohio Council, the Ohio Rail Development Commission and the Ohio Homeland Security Advisory Council by the Senate president.
Shortly after being elected to office, Senator LaRose was one of many legislators who drew attention due to his vote on Senate Bill 5. Though he originally opposed the bill, pointing out flaws such as language that could subject strikers to imprisonment, he worked tirelessly with the bill’s sponsor to find a middle ground. As a result, amendments were added in order to protect the essential right of employees to collectively bargain. Ultimately, he chose to vote for the bill, allowing it to pass by a narrow margin, due to his confidence that the bill “will give tools to the county, city, and school board to manage human-resource costs and so while still being fair to the hard-working people.”. LaRose added that he agonized over the decision due to his value and honor of the work of first responders, teachers, and others who serve the public. Despite mean-spirited personal attacks and senseless threats to the Senator over his vote, LaRose remained calm and reassured the public that he cast his vote solely based on what he believes is right and his was vote was not, and will never be, motivated by political considerations or outside pressure. After the bill, which passed, was repealed by a public referendum, LaRose respected the voice of his constituents and said, “The voters have made it clear that this was not the course they wished to take.” Nonetheless, the Senator added, “the challenges [of increasing tax burden on our families] facing our communities remain” and that his colleagues, regardless of party “must work together to bring prosperity back to the Buckeye State.”
LaRose gained respect for his stance, decision, and final vote on the issue; he handily won re-election for his seat in 2014.
Sponsored Legislation and Dedication to Restoring Civility in Government
Senator LaRose has put his name atop several dynamic pieces of legislation.
During the 129th General Assembly, the Senator sponsored legislation to make Ohio’s regulatory system more efficient and more conducive to economic growth, which eases the burden on employers and Ohio families.
During the 130th General Assembly Senator LaRose sponsored a resolution that revises the process by which Ohio draws its state legislative and U.S. congressional districts; it passed by a vote of 32 to 1 in the Ohio Senate on December 12, 2013.
The Senator also sponsored legislation that would allow spouses of active duty military members to be eligible for unemployment compensation when their family is transferred to a new duty assignment. Currently, 44 other states and the District of Columbia provide similar benefits to military spouses.
LaRose has also authored several election reform measures, throughout various General Assemblies. Two allow Ohio to join 37 other states in allowing its citizens to register to vote online beginning in 2017. Another seeks to make the absentee voting registration process more fair and accurate.
In the 131st General Assembly, LaRose has sponsored even more pieces of legislation.
In 2015, LaRose praised the passage of a bill that creates a Volunteer Police Officer’s Fund in memory of fallen volunteer Willoughby Police Officer Jason Gresko who died in service. This fund, similar to the Volunteer Firefighter’s Dependent Fund, provides death benefits to families of volunteer and part time law enforcement officers.
Also In 2015, Governor Kasich signed LaRose’s bill to improve veterans’ access to medical benefits. This bill requires public services to make veterans aware of the benefits for which they are eligible to help veterans navigate the complex system, which can often naturally prevent veterans from receiving the full benefits they are eligible to receive. This billed pas with unanimous, bicameral support in the Ohio General Assembly.
The Senator also worked on a collaborative, bipartisan effort to keep Ohio families safe with the Violent Career Criminal Act, a piece of legislation that passed to protect Ohioans from repeat offenders by keeping violent criminals off the street. As a result, any adult convicted of at least two felonies in the past eight years will now be classified as a “Violent Career Criminal,” mandating an additional 2–11 years of prison time, in addition to an internment increase by 50% for crimes involving firearms. This act passed anticipating that over 50% of crime in Ohio is committed by repeat, convicted, violent felons and accordingly this could cut down crime by the aforementioned rate by keeping these felons off the street.
Additionally, Senator LaRose sponsored a bill to protect children and pets trapped in vehicles in extreme heat. The piece of legislation, which was recently signed into law by Governor John Kasich, grants immunity to Ohioans who break into a locked vehicle to save a child or pet from extreme heat, on the condition that the rescuer contacted 9-1-1 prior to forcibly entering the vehicle, and given that no other reasonable methods of escape may exist. Given that cars parked in direct sunlight can reach internal temperatures up to 172 degrees in the peak of summer, “it’s important that Ohioans know there is no need to hesitate to take action when the life of a child or animal is at risk,” said LaRose. “Now that the law provides immunity for Good Samaritans who do what it takes to save life, Ohioans who do the right thing have no need to fear legal repercussions.”
LaRose has pursued these policy changes while also gaining a reputation as someone who will reach across the aisle to achieve sound public policy. A fellow legislator and current Senate Minority Leader, Sen. Joe Schiavoni (D-Boardman), has described LaRose as “honest” and “very hardworking.” LaRose helped form an informal civility working group among members of the Ohio General Assembly to promote civility in government. When describing his process, he said, “I naturally ended up partnering with people on both sides of the aisle and working to try to get things done.”
November 2014 Ohio Senate Election
After his first term, LaRose filed to run for his second term in the Ohio Senate on February 3, 2014. LaRose’s campaign issued a press release shortly after he filed for his second term. Upon filing for his second term, LaRose described how Ohio has improved since he took office: "When I came to Columbus in 2011, our state was in rough shape. We were facing the largest state deficit in history and every day businesses were leaving Ohio and taking thousands of jobs with them. By balancing our books and transforming Ohio into a state where businesses and families want to be, we're seeing progress toward rebuilding our great state. I'm confident that Ohio's best days are ahead, not behind us, but only if we roll up our sleeves and work together as Ohioans to make it happen. I'm humbled to have the opportunity to do my part in achieving the goal of a stronger, more prosperous state of Ohio and excited about our state's future. That's why I'll be campaigning hard this year for the chance to return to Columbus and continue building on the successes we've seen."  In his first term, LaRose was dedicated to eliminating unnecessary regulations which cost jobs, protecting families from the hazards of homes used as meth labs, working with colleagues to balance the state budget while increasing funding for education and infrastructure, cutting taxes so that all Ohioans can keep more of what they earn, working to reform Ohio's process for drawing legislative districts, standing-up for his fellow military veterans and advocating for common sense election reforms.
- "Frank LaRose LinkedIn". Retrieved June 16, 2016.
- "Ohio National Guard Special Forces Soldiers honor fallen comrade by dedicating drop zone in his name". Ohio National Guard. Retrieved June 1, 2016.
- Boyle, Matthew (March 5, 2011). "Ohio GOP State Senator faces nasty threats from unions on Facebook, in restaurant". The Daily Caller. Retrieved June 16, 2016.
- Armon, Rick (November 7, 2010). "First-time candidate pulls off political feat in election". Akron Beacon Journal.
- "Amended Official Results". Ohio Secretary of State.
- Jacobson, Louis (January 2014). "12 State Legislators to Watch in 2014". Governing: States and Localities.
- "Biography". Ohio State Senate.
- Warsmith, Stephanie. "LaRose gets flak, thanks for vote on unions". www.ohio.com. Retrieved 2016-10-28.
- "Statement From Senator Frank LaRose On Senate Bill 5". The Ohio Senate. Retrieved 2016-10-28.
- "Akron-area lawmakers respond to SB 5 repeal". www.ohio.com. Retrieved 2016-10-28.
- "LaRose Praises Passage Of Bill To Establish Online Voter Registration In Ohio". The Ohio Senate. Retrieved 2016-12-05.
- "LaRose Applauds Passage Of Bill Supporting Families Of Fallen Officers". The Ohio Senate. Retrieved 2016-12-05.
- "Bill To Improve Veterans' Access To Medical Benefits Goes To Governor For Signature". The Ohio Senate. Retrieved 2016-12-05.
- "LaRose Announces Senate Passage Of Violent Career Criminal Act". The Ohio Senate. Retrieved 2016-12-05.
- "LaRose Announces That Bill To Protect Children And Pets From Extreme Heat In Vehicles Takes Effect Today". The Ohio Senate. Retrieved 2016-12-05.
- The Ohio Senate: Senator Frank LaRose (R) - District 27
- Frank LaRose, official campaign website
- Profile at Project Vote Smart