Rupert Boneham, known for his appearances on the TV show "Survivor," has declared that he will run for governor of Indiana as a Libertarian in 2012.
From the Indiana LP website:
By LPIN Editor Published: October 22, 2011
Rupert Boneham announced today his intentions to seek the nomination of the Libertarian Party for the office of the Governor of Indiana.
“It’s time for a change in Indiana,” said Boneham. “Hoosiers have consistently voted in professional politicians and look at the results. Hoosiers should have a different choice in 2012. Through my experiences running my small businesses and my nonprofits, I have witnessed firsthand the dysfunctional state of our current government. We have to move in a different direction, and we can’t turn the reins of government over to the same politicians that created the mess.”
Boneham continued, “I am in a unique position to bring together Hoosiers of all walks of life to serve our state. I am not beholden to any special interests. I have only one interest: Empowering Hoosiers to give back to their communities. If the government puts up roadblocks, then they should be repealed.”
“Many people are aware of me through one small aspect of my life, which was my time on Survivor. I’ve come up from humble beginnings to own and operate several small businesses. I was then on this reality TV show that allowed me a platform to raise money for my charity, Rupert’s Kids. Through that work I’ve been blessed, and I’ve put almost everything back in to my community. I am looking forward to telling Hoosiers my entire story.”
Boneham came into a national spotlight through his appearances on Survivor. During the first “Heroes and Villains” season, out of 38 million votes, 34 million viewers selected Boneham as their favorite survivor, and awarded him check for one million dollars. This remains the highest vote total ever in a modern American TV reality show competition.
After winning his million dollars, Boneham made good on his promise to donate a large portion to create Rupert’s Kids, the culmination of 20-plus years of work with at-risk youth. The organization’s goal is to mentor at-risk youth. Their stated mission is to help, “those that have become too old for the youth social service system, but are not old enough for the adult social service system. We teach these youth valuable skills and trades, while also empowering them to discover their inner strengths, passions and interests.”
Rupert’s Kids, in partnership with the City of Indianapolis, created The Park Adoption Program. The program has saved taxpayers $150,000.00 in the past years and continues to provide a safe, enjoyable work environment for Rupert’s Kids. Rupert’s Kids does not receive federal or state funds. Boneham continues to raise funds and awareness for Rupert’s Kids through a campaign of nationwide appearances and speaking engagements.
Boneham owns and operates several small businesses including Tournament Towers, which has 10 crews on the road during football season. The company transports and sets up support gear for high-profile clients as NBC Sunday Night Football, ESPN and The NFL Network to name a few.
Boneham was born on January 27, 1964 in Detroit, Michigan, but grew up in Kokomo, Indiana which considers Rupert their most famous native son. Boneham has resided in Indianapolis, Indiana for the past 21 years. He has been married to his wife Laura for 14 years. They have one daughter, Raya.