My name is Chris Minelli.  Like many of you who are visiting this page, I am fed up with the representation we have in Congress and I am fed up with the general indifference our federal government has towards families, workers, and those who wish to pursue the American dream in the 21st century.

I was born and raised in North Bend, Ohio, which is on the Ohio river west of Cincinnati near the Indiana state line.  I attended Miami University and was a member of the U.S. Air Force ROTC program there.  I intended to be a military pilot but sustained an injury during my sophomore year requiring a brand new right shoulder and a brand new career choice.  Law school brought me to Illinois.

I decided to dedicate myself to law because – contrary to the common perception of lawyers in society – lawyers can work to bring change to the world and help people achieve their dreams.  I have helped many people organize small businesses, defend against unfounded claims in court, and pursue charitable activities in not-for-profit corporations and 501(c)(3) entities.

I can bring significant skills to Congress if I am elected to replace Adam Kinzinger.  Every full-time job that I have held I created myself.  I graduated law school in 2008 in the middle of the worst economic recession in decades.  Instead of throwing up the white flag on finding employment as a lawyer, I started my own law firm during a time when other law firms were closing or consolidating by laying off clerks and associate attorneys.  I understand business, I understand flexibility to changing markets, and I can bring these skills to Washington to work on making conditions favorable in Illinois for job creation.

As a law school graduate, I also understand student loan debt.  My family has had to make significant sacrifices to make ends meet since the Recession, and I understand how difficult it is for the middle class.  I know what it is like to run your car’s tires well beyond what you should in order to pay bills.  I understand what it is like to eat cheaply when unexpected bills come due.  I want to alleviate some of this pressure, because much of it is a direct result of Washington’s policies.

Finally, I want to help the 16th district utilize what makes America great to benefit our communities.  America was built by three fundamental principles: American pride, American innovation, and American work ethic.  Historically Americans always adapted and overcame obstacles to their pursuit of life, liberty, and happiness with hard work and creativity.  I want to create an environment for people to build a life they want without insurmountable obstacles standing in their way.

I live in Ottawa, Illinois with my wife Melissa and our daughter Eloise.  (The photo above was taken before our annual YMCA Daddy-Daughter Dance).  We have one large Great Dane dog, Otis, and three cats at home.  Eloise is always adding extra pets she finds in the yard like worms and bugs.

Here are some quick facts about me:

Full Name:  Christopher Ryan Minelli

Occupation:  Lawyer and Blogger

Favorite Sports Team:  The Cincinnati Reds (sorry Illinois — you can take the kid out of Cincinnati but you can’t take the Cincinnati out of the kid).

Hobbies:  Collecting autographs, listening to baseball on the radio, gardening, and woodworking.

Favorite Book:  “On the Road” by Jack Kerouac.

What Are you Reading Now?:  A good friend of the family discovered she had two copies of Winston Churchill’s “A History of the English Speaking Peoples” (who has two copies of that!?!?) and she sent one to me.  The book is fine but Churchill seems to be a little full of himself.

What Is Your Favorite Kind of Music?:  Alternative rock, such as Foo Fighters, the Airborne Toxic Event, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

Favorite Food:  Cincinnati Chili.  We can debate all day long about where the best Cincinnati chili comes from.  (Price Hill Chili.  The answer is Price Hill Chili).

Person You Would Most Like to Meet:  Paul McCartney.