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Monday, May 2, 2016

Baird takes oath of office as new District 44 representative

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

District 44 State Representative Jim Baird (far left) is sworn in Tuesday along with all 100 members of the House, including 19 new State Representatives, by Chief Justice Shepard at the Indiana State House. Contributed photo
INDIANAPOLIS -- All 100 members of the Indiana House of Representatives, including 19 new state representatives, were sworn in Tuesday be Chief Justice Randall Shepard.

Among the 19 new reps was Greencastle's Jim Baird, representing the 44th District.

Baird spent the last four years as a Putnam County Commissioner, the first elected office he has held. When asked if he would have imagined four years ago that he would be heading to the statehouse, Baird said "no" with a laugh.

However, Baird brought with him a background as a small business owner and as a former board member of various groups.

"I've served on any number of committees and boards. I really had broad-based perspective on our local community and the rural community. I think that was an asset," Baird said.

"I enjoyed the position and the work very much," he said. "I tried to be informed about the issues and study on the issues that we had come before us. I really tried to come up with fiscally responsible ways of solving those."

Four years later, Baird takes the same set of experiences to Indianapolis, plus his experience as a county lawmaker.

"I think that experience with local government is going to be an asset," Baird said. "It gives you another perspective on the impact on those issues and the impact they have on the local community."

Baird said his concerns are not simply for Putnam County, but the direction of the state and the nation at large.

"I think this midterm election illustrated that people were concerned about their country. I was concerned about the country, and it seemed to be an opportunity to serve again," Baird said. "I think the decisions we make here in the next few years are extremely important."

His focus, though, remains the people of District 44.

"I'm very humbled by having been elected," Baird said. "I want to represent the interests of the people in our area. I want to see our area grow and have the jobs. Education then becomes a factor because an educated workforce is very important to having jobs. For people to have the opportunity to work and make a living and raise their families, that's how communities grow.

"I look forward to the start of this legislative session. There is much to be done and I am so thankful to my district for believing that I am the person to do it," Baird said.

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I would like you Baird if you wouldn't have attacked Nancy Michael in your campaign. That just comes to show that you have nothing good to say about yourself so you dig up passed garbage about your other opponent. She is a great lady, and she served district 44 very well.

-- Posted by cds1305 on Wed, Nov 17, 2010, at 1:08 PM

Way to go Mr. Baird! Always glad to see a good article!

-- Posted by justducky on Wed, Nov 17, 2010, at 2:07 PM

I was neutral in this campaign, but I do recall getting some negative ads from Michael about Baird. It said something about not paying taxes and giving himself a raise as commissioner. This was false as commissioners don't set pay raises, only the county council can do that.

Politics is a dirty, nasty business and this campaign set a new low for mud-slinging

-- Posted by albert on Wed, Nov 17, 2010, at 4:32 PM

They both lied during the campaign. There is no good excuse for either one. Let's hope Baird begins to deal with the public honestly. He did not during the campaign. For that matter, neither did Nancy. We deserve better.

-- Posted by justasking on Wed, Nov 17, 2010, at 7:41 PM

I have found Nancy Michael to be a most kind, humble person. She made herself available to people, answered questions, gave thought to solutions and really tried to be a "voice" for her constituents. It will be interesting to see if Mr. Baird has the same philosophy with his. Somehow, I don't think so.

-- Posted by transplant01 on Thu, Nov 18, 2010, at 10:40 AM

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