WASHINGTON, D.C. (FNN NEWS) – A few years ago, I began following a relative stranger on Facebook named Deborah Cox Roush. Every day, without fail, she would post uplifting memes often with two words as the lead in: “For Today,” never knowing at that point in my life I needed those inspiring messages more than ever. Known to her friends as “DCR,” a nickname given to her as I understand it by Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi, Mrs. Roush identifies her faith as a driving force behind her family and work. What a coincidence that I eventually not only met Mrs. Roush, but ultimately worked with her on the 2016 Donald J. Trump campaign where she served as the State of Florida Grassroots Director. Her story doesn’t stop there–she was recently appointed to the position of Director of Senior Corps at the Corporation for National and Community Service for the Trump Administration.
WHO IS DEBORAH COX ROUSH?
Mrs. Roush, a devoted wife and mother, created C and L Creative Solutions of Florida, a business that provides strategy, organization and management for advocacy issues, political campaigns, and corporate events as well as complete onsite event management. In addition to a substantial resume of leadership roles, Mrs. Roush also served as a Governor’s appointee to the Republican Party of Florida, Hillsborough Board of County Commissioners Citizens Advisory Council, Board of County Commissioners Charter Review Board, James Madison Institute Tampa Advisory Board, Vice President of With Women We Win and so much more. Now that’s a dash to be proud of.
DEBORAH COX ROUSH’S JOURNEY TO WASHINGTON DC
“I am so honored to be serving in this administration. Blessed beyond words,” expressed Mrs. Roush. Always quick to support and salute volunteers, Mrs. Roush added, “This journey has been a result of many people, including mentors and thousands of volunteers.” Mrs. Roush would often remind us all that “grassroots wins elections,” … “I will always be grateful and will always support grassroots efforts. I do not take it for granted and am thankful for this opportunity,” expressed Mrs. Roush.
Florida State House Representative and Chairman of the Republican Party of Florida Blaise Ingoglia said, “The Republican Party has many superstars and Debbie Cox Roush is definitely one of them. Debbie is a tireless worker for the party and did a remarkable job as the State of Florida Grassroots Director for the Trump campaign.” Ingoglia, who was recently reelected as the Republican Party Chairman for Florida and is encouraging leaders throughout the State of Florida to create Trump Republican Clubs to keep the energy and excitement for our new President alive and moving forward to 2020 continued, “We wish her nothing but success in her new role with the administration.”
WHEN DID HER POLITICAL LIGHT SWITCH ON?
For Mrs. Roush, it began with an interest in high school and college where she served in student government, but it wasn’t until 2003 that she really got involved in politics. “My mentor and current Hillsborough County Commissioner, Al Higginbotham, invited me to a Republican Executive Committee meeting and it really all started from there,” Mrs. Roush recalled. “I realized the monumental challenges our country was facing and wanted to be part of the solution.” That type of energy and enthusiasm is really what embodied so many volunteers and voters of President Donald J. Trump.
Dena Stebbins DeCamp, President, Florida Federation of Republican Women noted, “I am so excited Deborah Cox Roush is the new head of Senior Corps. Debbie has been a hard working volunteer for many years in Florida, for the Republican Party of Florida and the Florida Federation of Republican Women.” An impressive woman herself, DeCamp added, “We are thrilled that the White House is rewarding her hard work with this appointment as the new head of Senior Corps. We will miss Debbie in Florida, but Washington D.C. will benefit hugely from her efforts.”
In trying to identify what drives Mrs. Roush in one word she responded, “Determined!” She explained, “I never look back, only forward…and wake up every day thinking if I can make a difference, even a small one, it is a good day.”
Susie Wiles, a partner with Ballard Partners and 2016 Florida campaign director for the Florida Trump campaign, stated, “I have a short list of people who I would always want on my side in a campaign and Debbie Cox Roush is at the top of that list.” Ms. Wiles, a political dynamo herself, added, “In addition to being smart and professional with great judgement, being incredibly well connected in political circles in Florida and across the nation, being among the hardest workers I know…she is a genuinely good person. I am so very proud to call Deb my friend.” For anyone in politics to have the nod of Wiles is like winning a political Emmy.
WHAT IS YOUR MOTTO, Mrs. ROUSH?
“The only person you should try to be better than is the person you were yesterday,” suggested Mrs. Roush. “I wake up every day and think, how can I improve myself? How can I help those around me? Life is too short for regrets, we should only look forward.” Certainly as a you follow her on Facebook she religiously works to share inspiration. “Make each day count and make each day’s mission to make this world, even in a small way, a better place.”
“I was pleased and proud to work along side Debbie,” said Tony Ledbetter, Chairman ,Volusia County Republican Executive Committee and staff member of the 2016 Florida Trump campaign. “Everyone who knows her is aware of her organizational skills. She didn’t disappoint. Our grassroots efforts statewide brought the Florida victory on November 8.”
“I believe that there is no high[er] gift than to be loyal. I believe that Deborah Cox Roush has been a loyal team player of the Republican Party of Florida. Her work in the first Marco Rubio campaign for Florida Senate and her total dedication during our last Presidential campaign shows what she is made of,”says Bertica Cabrera-Morris, business and governmental consultant, Florida for Trump Hispanic spokesperson, Hispanic liaison for the Republican National Convention, and one of the most respected women in Florida politics, bar none. “Her new position with the administration is a small token to a long life of dedication and heartfelt work where many benefited and we are a better nation because of it. Hats off to Deborah Cox Roush.”
“I met Deborah Cox Roush very soon after arriving in Florida to work with the Trump campaign,” says Mitch Tyner, Attorney, Trump 2016 Mississippi State Director, and a volunteer who came to Florida to help during the later stages of the campaign.”I specifically remember an opening of an office in Lakeland, Florida. When she arrived she immediately looked at the inside and outside through the eyes of the media moving signs, arranging flags and decorations. She’s a stickler for detail and a constant motivator and team player. Her nature is to get the best out of people.”
Volunteers like Kathryn Gates Skipper, the 2016 Veterans for Trump chairperson agreed with Tyner in saluting how Mrs. Roush supports volunteers. “I first met DCR in the summer of 2015 at the Sunshine Summit in Orlando as she was the Volunteer Event Coordinator. She had a very natural way of making me feel my volunteer work was appreciated.”
“Dating back to the Herman Cain for President campaign where we worked together you knew she would run circles around those in DC and she will shine as the true leader she is,” said Derek Hankerson, Political Director, Blakpac. Raising up volunteers is a theme pretty consistent with Mrs. Roush. “It’s always humbling to see friends and colleagues acquire a Presidential appointment especially from your home State of Florida,” Hankerson further explained.
WHAT MAKES YOU MOST HAPPY?
“My family and my faith. I owe everything to a strong family upbringing, My mother and father taught me that if you work hard, anything is possible, ” said Mrs. Roush.
“My husband Greg is my rock and he supports me in everything I do. I am truly blessed to have a family that supports me that I love deeply and gave me such a solid foundation,” said Mrs. Roush. “As I get older, my faith has become very important and deep. I thank God every day for the blessings He has bestowed.” Certainly her faith and energy for life are infectious.
I couldn’t conclude this article without sending my personal thank you and congratulations to “DCR.” The 2016 campaign wasn’t always easy and there were days were I thought, “Okay, enough.” I mean, I was the gay Republican running the Orange County Trump campaign…certainly not easy. And in my ear would be Mrs. Roush lifting me and reminding me this was bigger than me. She became a coach who led from behind. She’d cut through my chatter to interrupt me and say, “Okay, but what’s the solution?” More than anything, she became a friend. And in her new role she represents the work of so many that helped elect the 45th President of the United States, Donald J. Trump. I salute and congratulate her on behalf of over 1,300 volunteers in Orange County and so many more throughout the State of Florida. In her we all celebrate!
Mrs. Roush has her undergraduate degree in Education/History from Georgetown College and a Paralegal degree from Old Dominion College. She has received numerous professional awards, citations, and certificates. She resides in Washington D.C. with her husband Greg, a retired police officer.
I still follow Mrs. Roush and her uplifting post on Facebook each day. And while she now says, “Good Morning Washington DC” I look forward to… “For Today!”
Randy Ross is a political contributor for Florida National News. | firstname.lastname@example.org