Ex-senator Penry to accept job in Denver

Sen. Josh Penry

Former Sen. Josh Penry has accepted a job in the Denver office of EIS Solutions, a Grand Junction-based energy consulting business, the Republican said Friday.

The position includes business consulting and communication duties for a wide range of companies. Penry’s job will be to help those companies navigate government regulations and handle media relations.

The legislator, who briefly ran for governor and is completing a four-year term in the Colorado Senate after serving two terms in the House, also is to write everything from policy papers to speeches on the side for nonprofit groups, trade associations, candidates and elected officials.

Penry said he is renting a home in Denver, but plans to buy a house there while maintaining ownership of a home in Fruita, which is being rented. Penry recently sold his Grand Junction home, but plans to keep the Fruita residence for now.

Penry will be replaced in the state Senate by Rep. Steve King, R-Grand Junction, who defeated Democrat Claudette Konola for the seat earlier this month. Penry decided not to run for re-election in favor of a run for governor, a campaign he dropped a year ago citing a desire to spend more time with his family.

Not long after dropping out of that race, however, he went to work as campaign manager for Jane Norton’s bid for the U.S. Senate.

A return to politics is definitely in Penry’s future, he said, but not until he has spent a few years in the private sector.

He said driving between Grand Junction and Denver for legislative sessions took its toll on his wallet and family time. As a result, Penry said he would prefer to spend more time with his children before considering another bid for office. Which office he might seek, only time will tell.

“Opportunities come and go and come again,” he said. “If it makes sense, I’ll jump back in, but I’m honestly not planning anything.”

Penry said he has no regrets about dropping out of the governor’s race, which ultimately led to Evergreen resident Dan Maes narrowly defeating Penry’s old boss, former congressman Scott McInnis, in the August primary.

“That’s the great thing about being 34,” Penry said. “I know I’ll have the chance to do it again.”


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