Photo: Meet Richard Carmona, the Candidate Obama Wants to be the Next Arizona Senator
Former U.S. Surgeon General, Richard Carmona, is President Obama’s choice to fill the U.S. Senate seat in Arizona to replace retiring Republican Senator Jon Kyl. So who is this 62-year-old?
At the age of 16, Puerto Rican-blooded Carmona dropped out of high school and enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1967 where he earned his GED. He went on to join the U.S. Army Special Forces, become a combat-decorated Vietnam veteran, and begin his career in medicine as a Special Forces medic.
After active duty, he attended Bronx Community College of the City University of New York and graduate with an associate of arts degree in nursing. He would continue his impressive higher education career with a bachelor of science degree (1977) and a medical degree (1979) from the University of California, San Francisco He would return to school and earn a Master’s degree in Public Health from the University of Arizona in 1998.
Carmona has served in the medical field as a paramedic, registered nurse, and a physician. He also served as law enforcement with the Pima County Sheriff’s Department in south central Arizona, where he earned his way up to deputy sheriff.
One of his biggest career milestones came with President George W. Bush’s nomination of Carmona for Surgeon General in March 2002. A registered Independent, Carmona was praised by both Republicans and Democrats and with a vote of 98-0, was confirmed to the U.S. Senate as the 17th Surgeon General of the United States on July 23, 2002. Carmona served as Surgeon General until July 2006.
Though raised in New York’s Harlem neighborhood, he currently resides in Tucson, Arizona with the mother of his two daughters and two sons, his wife Diana Sanchez.
In November of 2011, Carmona announced he would seek the Democratic Party’s nomination for the U.S. Senate after being personall recruited by President Obama to do so. He is currently the only “Democrat” running for Kyl’s seat and if elected, could become the first Dem to hold the Senate seat since the mid-1990s.
What do you think, does Carmona, a Hispanic Democrat registered as an Independent, has a chance to become an Senator in Arizona?