Mayor John Suthers is winding down his second term as mayor and will leave office in June.
During a podcast that will accompany the Sixty35 news magazine feature story about the April 4 city election that comes out Jan. 18, we asked Suthers what his next step will be.
The short answer is he will serve as chairman of one of the region’s largest nonprofits and also might join a lawfirm as an advisor. He also has an autobiography coming out.
“I’m through with elective politics,” says Suthers, who’s served as district attorney, head of the Department of Corrections, U.S. Attorney, Colorado Attorney General and mayor.
“I’ve been in the arena for 35 years…, and that’s enough,” he says. “I think my analytical skills are really good, but I’m not as quick on my feet. I’ve lost some of the verbal acumen, things like that, and it’s time to get out of elected public office.
“I just got elected chairman of the Daniels Fund, a very large foundation in Colorado, [with] about $1.7 billion. Under IRS regs, I haven’t been able to be paid [by the fund, because he’s serving as mayor]. It’s actually a pretty good paying gig.” According to a 2020 IRS filing, the most recent available, by the Daniels Fund, which serves Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, and Utah, the chairman at that time was paid $63,505. The mayor is paid roughly $114,000.
“When I step down as mayor, I hope to … be on one nonprofit board, one profit board. And then I think the likelihood is I’ll wind up affiliating with a law firm. I don’t want to go back and be a courtroom litigator. But I have a lot of experience in ,you know, how things work and in government relations, all that sort of thing. And so I think that’s probably [a] likelihood.
“I’m not the retiring type. But I do want to have more time for travel. It’s really tough as mayor to get away for more than 10 days. My wife and I love international traveling. So I think we’d like [to take] couple international trips a year and do some domestic traveling. I want to design several gigs around getting in more traveling.”
As for his book, he warns people, “If you’re looking for scandal, this is not your book. It’s a ‘tell all’ by a really boring guy. So don’t expect the ‘tell all’ to be very interesting. There’s a few tidbits about a couple of governors that people may find interesting.”
It’s called All This I Saw and Part of It, I Was, a quote taken from Brig. Gen. Robert Alexander Cameron who drove the first stake on July 31, 187 to establish Colorado Springs.
The book tells his “very interesting personal story,” he says. He was adopted as an infant and only recently has discovered and connected with biological relatives.
When at the age of 15 he lost his father, “I kind of decided right then and there, my goal in life was to lead a life that had some consequence. And as I look back, you know, I’ll be 72 in October, thanks to the people of Colorado, people of Colorado Springs, I’ve had the opportunity to live the life I intended to live. And not everybody gets to say that.”