Senator Ochoa Bogh (R-Yucaipa) has honored Art Welch, long-time Senate staffer and community leader, for his commitment to helping improve the lives of all residents of the Inland Empire.
"Art is an integral part of our office," said Senator Ochoa Bogh. "He has lived a life of service and dedication to his family and community. His experience and knowledge are tremendous gifts to us all. I am honored to recognize his accomplishments and exceptional integrity, tenacity, and dedication to his family and the entire community. Thank you, Art, for your tireless efforts in improving the lives of others."
Welch was born in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, where he attended Southeast Missouri State University and earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration and Marketing. He started his professional career soon after working in various capacities, including Executive District Manager, National Product Manager, and Sales Representative for Merck & Co. Inc., a pharmaceutical company.
While attending Missouri State, Welch met his lovely wife, Jodie. They have been married for 62 years, and together they have three adult children: Beth, Jim, and Scott.
Welch was a "hands-on" father. Throughout the years, he coached pop warner football, soccer, softball, and baseball, always focusing on his children and supporting their individual interests. He was president of the all-school booster club for Katella High School in Anaheim, and when his family moved to Sun Lakes, he became a Master Board Member of the Sun Lakes HOA.
His time serving on the Sun Lakes HOA Master Board prompted Welch to think about public service and ultimately decide to run and become a City Councilman for Banning in 2002. From there, serving his community became a major focus for Welch. He successfully navigated his time between family and the community to serve as a council member for several years as the Mayor of Banning and Chair of the local Development Agency. Welch also served as President of the Banning Chamber of Commerce and San Gorgonio Pass Rotary Club.
Welch has significant legislative experience working as a Field Representative for various members of the State Legislature, including then-State Assemblyman Paul Cook, State Senator Bill Emmerson, State Senator Mike Morrell, and State Senator Rosilicie Ochoa Bogh.
He is currently Vice President of Table of Plenty, a food kitchen that serves about 200 meals every Wednesday at the Beaumont Presbyterian church. Never seeking acknowledgment, Welch continues to serve his community in every possible way, ensuring those in need have a warm meal.
Together Welch and Jodie enjoy spending quality time with their family. They are proud grandparents to seven grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.
“I feel absolutely blessed to have Art, a community foundation, as part of my team,” said Senator Ochoa Bogh. “I thank his family for sharing his time with us and the opportunity it gives us to experience Art’s kindness, friendship, and institutional knowledge he brings to our office.”