Allies of former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina on Monday named more than two dozen Texas Republicans who are backing her presidential bid, making her the first 2016 candidate with a leadership team in Texas.
Former Comptroller Susan Combs, who had previously endorsed Fiorina, is leading the 26-member team, the first of its kind for a White House hopeful in Texas. The team was announced by CARLY for America, a super PAC working to put Fiorina, an Austin native, in the White House.
Among the team's members are elected officials like state Rep. Patricia Harless of Spring and Irving Mayor Beth Van Duyne as well as other prominent women in state politics, including Carolyn Hodges, former president of the Texas Federation of Republican Women. The team is also made up of Texas business leaders such as Paula Mann, founder of Sunbelt Telecommunications; Carol Nichols, founder of Circle C Ventures; and Kristin Kaufman, Founder of Alignment Inc.
The announcement of the team came a day after Fiorina addressed a national meeting of women business owners in San Antonio. She was scheduled to visit the state Sunday to Tuesday, with private events in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
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Riding high in the polls after back-to-back breakout performances in the debates, Fiorina has a number of powerful fans in Texas politics. Among them: Gov. Greg Abbott, whom she campaigned for last year, and former Gov. Rick Perry, who lavished praise on her even when they were rivals in the presidential race.
The full team:
- Susan Combs, former comptroller (co-chair)
- Susan Adzick of Dallas, vice president of sales for McLane Company
- Erin Botsford of McKinney, CEO and founder of The Botsford Group
- Cathy Brock of Houston, Republican activist and strategist
- Tricia Conover of McKinney, former vice President of SAP
- Laura Ehrenberg-Chesler of San Antonio, Co-CEO of Crossvault Capital Management
- Patricia Harless of Spring, Republican state representative
- Cyndee Herrin of Celina, land developer
- Carolyn Hodges of Houston, former president of the Texas Federation of Republican Women
- Celeste Hubert of Austin, political strategist
- Martin Hubert of Austin, former deputy comptroller
- Andi Hughes of Dallas, Republican activist
- Kristin Kaufman of Dallas, founder of Alignment Inc.
- Paula Mann of Celina, founder and former CEO of Sunbelt Telecommunications
- Maribess Miller of Dallas, former managing partner of PricewaterhouseCoopers
- Buddy Minett of Frisco, real estate broker
- Cynthia Montgomery of Dallas, former banker
- Carla Moran of Lubbock, Republican activist and strategist
- Karen Newton of San Antonio, auxiliary chairman of the Texas Federation of Republican Women
- Carol Nichols of Dallas, founder of Circle C Ventures
- Julie Parsley of Austin, former public utility commissioner and former solicitor general
- Linda Spina of McKinney, former sales executive for IBM
- John Tate of San Antonio, attorney
- Toby Tate of San Antonio, community leader and philanthropist
- Beth Van Duyne, mayor of Irving
- Kay Weeks of Dallas, real estate agent