SALT LAKE CITY — The Winder family lived up to its namesake on Election Day, as three family members claimed three victories in their respective political races Tuesday.
Rep. Mike Winder won his re-election bid for the Utah House of Representatives District 30. His wife, Karyn Winder, was re-elected to the Granite School Board. And Mike Winder’s older sister, Aimee Winder Newton, was re-elected to the Salt Lake County Council.
“It’s an exciting day but also a relief to have Election Day behind us,” Mike Winder said.
All three Winders will serve their second terms as elected officials. Mike Winder and Aimee Winder Newton ran as Republicans, while Karyn Winder ran as an unaffiliated candidate.
Another relative in the extended family, Chase Winder, ran for office, but lost to Derek Kitchen in Utah Senate District 2.
The Winder family is no stranger to politics.
Mike and Aimee Winder’s parents, Kent and Sherri Winder, both were involved in Taylorsville City government. Kent Winder served on the served on the Taylorsville City Council, while Sherri Winder was co-chairperson for the board that oversaw the 1996 incorporation of Taylorsville, according to Aimee Winder Newton.
Kent Winder’s cousin, Jim Winder, is currently Moab Police Chief and previously was Salt Lake County Sheriff. At least 11 other Winders have participated in political races in Utah dating back to 1872, according to Mike Winder.
“I think there’s a tradition, a longstanding Winder family tradition, of giving back to the community, of trying to leave the world a better place than you found it,” said Mike Winder, who also previously served as mayor of West Valley City.
As a former parent-teacher association president, Karyn Winder said she wanted to continue fighting for kids.
“Marrying into a political family gave me the confidence to put my hat in the ring,” she said in an email.
Aimee Winder Newton, who serves as chair of the Salt Lake County Council, echoed her brother’s sentiment. She said her mother, who died in a car crash seven years ago, inspired family members to give back to the community.
“She’s one of our role models,” Aimee Winder Newton said. “She was very involved in trying to make her community a better place.”
It’s good to have a sounding board and mentors within your own family. We just have to be careful not to let politics dominate the family parties.
Both Mike and Aimee Winder said they appreciate having another member of the family who can relate to what it’s like being an elected official.
Aimee Winder Newton said she enjoys being able to call her brother and talk about things that have happened in her role as a politician. They bounce ideas off of each other and share their thoughts on what each person has done well, and what they can improve on, Aimee Winder Newton said.
“It’s nice to have a sibling who understands what it’s like to be an elected official and to be involved in politics because it can be grueling sometimes,” she said.
The two see each other frequently at government meetings, Aimee Winder Newton said.
Mike Winder said all three Winders in public service are just trying to do their part to give back to their communities.
“It’s good to have a sounding board and mentors within your own family,” Mike Winder said. “We just have to be careful not to let politics dominate the family parties.”