Josh Owens is the first openly gay man to run for governor of Indiana.
Owens is the CEO of SupplyKick, a tech company based in Indianapolis. He is seeking the Democrat nomination to challenge Republican Eric Holcomb in the general election in 2020.
A native of Shelbyville, Owens says education will be his main platform with a specific focus on increasing teacher pay and expanding access and affordability of life-long learning for Hoosiers.
"I’m running for Governor now because I believe in an Indiana where teachers are paid what they deserve and where all are welcomed, respected and protected," Owens said. "We need a leader who will ensure our state budget, policies and laws reflect a bold and inclusive vision for collective Hoosier success."
"Today, many Indiana teachers have to work second jobs and even then, they spend their own money on classroom supplies. As a businessman, I know every Hoosier in the workplace matters, and leadership is required to solve this problem and finally pay them fairly."
He also wants to end discrimination of Hoosiers in the workplace and housing, including discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
Owens is married to his husband, Andy Owens. Josh Owens graduated from Wabash College and earned a master's degree at London School of Economics. He was raised in Shelbyville and previously worked at Angie’s List and One Click Ventures. He's also taught economics and statistics at Butler.
Owens joins Dr. Woody Myers on the Democrat ticket. State Sen. Eddie Melton of Gary is mulling a run for governor as well, having formed an exploratory committee to look into that possibility back in June.