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At just 20 years old, Brad Clendening already knows where he’s headed. “I want to be working in our government--and Politics. I love to listen to people’s ideas and concerns about issues facing our nation and what we can do to make America a better place.” He volunteers as an intern at the Dallas County Republican Party Headquarters and often commandeers the main phone lines, to cheerfully answer callers' questions about voting, registering to vote, where to go to vote, and just about everything else related to politics.

Brad Clendening is Making a Difference  in Dallas, and Invites Other College Students to Join Him

At 20, Brad Kent Clendening already knows where he’s headed. “I want to be working in our government, in politics, because I love both! I love to listen to people’s ideas and concerns about issues facing our nation and what we can do to make America a better place.”

Born and raised in Dallas, he has three older sisters: Allison 30, Laura, 28, and Erica, 25. Did they dress him up and make fun of him when he was little? “Oh yes! I clearly remember them painting my fingernails with pink nail polish—and my dad being kind of horrified!” Fortunately, all his sisters have moved out of the house and Brad, at six-foot-five-inches tall, is now safe from his “big” sisters’ antics. 

A graduate of June Shelton School on Hillcrest Road in Dallas, Brad is finishing his Associates degree at Brookhaven and just got accepted to SMU. He plans to major in political science and spends many hours volunteering in the Dallas County Republican Party Headquarters because, “I want to get the experience of what it’s like to work for a political party’s office.” Before interning at the DCRP he interned at Congressman Pete Sessions Office where he learned a lot about what it’s like to work for a congressional office.

But he has bigger dreams. “Personally, I’m more interested in the federal level of Government, so that’s another reason why I wanted to intern here--I wanted to learn all I can now about working at the state level.”

Hard worker

Brad only had a few weeks off from his previous position before he found the DCRP Headquarters. “When I finished my internship at Congressman Sessions' office there was a period where I wasn’t working for a few weeks. During those three weeks, I really missed working because I love to work. Sounds crazy right?”

He says, during that time, “I was browsing around the internet to see what political opportunities were out there in Dallas and I happened to fall upon the Dallas GOP website, when I noticed a page that said ‘Internship opportunities’ on it and I decided to give it a shot. A week later I got a phone call telling me to come in for an interview and everything fell into place after that.”

Brad recently met Ted Cruz and says, “He was very gracious person.” Brad was one of the first people to see him when he arrived at the Omni hotel for the Reagan Day Dinner.  “I guess who can say I was volunteer security!” he jokes.

Brad has also met Yu Darvish and Shin-Soo-Choo at a Rangers event.

One famous person he’d like to meet is Mitt Romney. “I wouldn’t be where I am right now if it wasn’t for him, because I agree on all his plicies, and he's not afraid to say what's on his mind--and he's not controlled by interest groups." Another person he would like to meet would be 'Wonder Woman' actress Gal Gadot because she is a hero, championing the underdog, "She's a strong woman and has the coolest accent ever!"

Most people don’t know Brad hasn't always looked like a super hero. He admits "I wasn't in the best physical shape just a few years ago. I used to eat sweets and junk food every single day. For breakfast, sometimes I would eat cake and popcorn."

In fact, his personal record was 18 large pancakes for breakfast. "For dinner I would eat two large pizzas, ice cream, chip ‘n dip, and brownies.” He admits that, “One day I looked at myself in the mirror with disappointment and decided to completely stop eating sweets and junk food.” It’s been 2 ½ years now and he says, “I haven’t eaten sweets of any kind or junk food since.” He’s also lost almost 30 pounds.

That led to people telling him he should consider a new career.  “Many people were telling me that I should be a model, so I decided to interview at a modeling agency in Dallas.” But, he says, “I got rejected because they said I’m too tall to fit in most companies’ clothes, which are typically for men six foot tall and below.”

Brad has lots of talent. “I created my own Texas Rangers website for fun,” he said, “and I came in 3rd in the Dallas Zoo photo contest in 2013.” It was a photo of a Lion lying down and colors of its head blended in with the ground.

He can also dazzle his fans by moving his ears side to side and sometimes up and down. His favorite food is steak and more than once he’s eaten a 50 oz. steak for dinner--and was still hungry after that.

His goal in life is to be somewhere helping make a difference in the lives of Americans. "Whether I’m working in our government implementing people’s ideas into action or working to re-elect Republicans that will help Americans achieve the American Dream. I'm willing to do what it takes to help our country."

To learn more about becoming a volunteer or an intern at the Dallas County Republican Party Headquarters call 214-369-9555 or see www.dallasgop.org or the Dallas Country Republican Party Facebook page.

Judy Porter is a writer in Dallas. Contact her at judy-porter@sbcglobal.net. 

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