Jefferson Shreve, the former Indianapolis City-County Council member and self-storage business owner who lost to incumbent Mayor Joe Hogsett by 20 points in November’s mayoral election, has thrown his hat into the ring to become a member of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Shreve filed to run in the Republican primary for the 6th Congressional District on Friday, a spokeswoman for Shreve confirmed to IBJ.
He joins a crowded Republican primary field to replace U.S. Rep. Greg Pence, who announced in January that he would not seek reelection. The field includes State Rep. Mike Speedy, R-Indianapolis; State Sen. Jeff Raatz, R-Richmond; Darin Childress, Sid Mahant and Jamison Carrier.
Shreve, a Republican who sold his self-storage company for $590 million in 2022, spent heavily in the 2023 Indianapolis mayoral election. He gave $13.5 million in direct funding and loans to his own campaign.
Shreve previously lost a bid for state Senate in 2016 to late Sen. Jack Sandlin. His hefty mayoral campaign spending indicates he’ll likely be the best-funded candidate among his Republican peers.
At a December press conference where Shreve and his wife, Mary, announced a $100,000 donation to Indianapolis animal welfare organizations, both parties indicated that it was unlikely another run for office would be on the horizon. When asked, his wife, Mary, laughed. Shreve said the couple planned to “continue to be involved as private citizens with some financial horsepower, through which to carry our message toward amplifying causes that matter to us.”
Shreve has made significant donations to IUPUI, where he sits on the board of advisers. In 2018, he and his wife Mary funded the construction of “The Shreve Gateway,” the 52-foot tall steel structure at the corner of Michigan and West streets for IUPUI. The unspecified donation also funded two endowed scholarships.
He was twice chosen by Republican caucuses to serve as an Indianapolis city-county councilor, but has never won a true election. He was first chosen to represent south-side District 23 in 2012 and held the seat until 2015, in the place of Jeff Cardwell. Cardwell resigned for a cabinet position under former Gov. Mike Pence.
He was chosen by a GOP caucus in 2018 to fill a seat left vacant by former Republican City-County Councilor Jeff Miller’s resignation after Miller pleaded guilty to four battery charges stemming from a child molestation investigation. The district covered parts of downtown and the south side, including influential properties such as the Indianapolis Convention Center, Lucas Oil Stadium and Eli Lilly and Co.’s massive corporate campus.
Shreve did not run for reelection after his term, and the seat is currently held by Councilor Kristin Jones.
Shreve was also a Republican National Convention delegate during the 2016 Republican presidential primary won by Donald Trump.