Brian Krolicki left the Capitol this week after 24 years of service in the building.
But Krolicki, termed out after eight years as treasurer and eight years as chief deputy in that office plus another eight as lieutenant governor, isn’t ruling out a return to public service.
“I think people either have that public service gene or they don’t and I certainly have it,” Krolicki said. “I still think public service is a noble calling and you don’t shed that just because of a term limit.”
He said for the next couple of years at least, it’s time to take care of his family — including three children ages 12, 14 and 16 who have never known him not to be in public office. And he said it’s time to make some money.
But he said if Gov. Brian Sandoval is serious about not running for Harry Reid’s U.S. Senate seat in 2016, he may be interested.
“If the governor doesn’t run, I would consider it,” he said. “But it’s hard to consider something until it’s available.”
“The governor is first in the queue and I would defer to him,” he said.
Krolicki, 54, said he absolutely loved both the treasurer’s office and being lieutenant governor.
As treasurer, he pointed to the Millennium Scholarship.
“It was (Gov.) Kenny Guinn’s dream but somebody actually had to construct the thing and make it work,” he said.
That task fell to him and his staff.
Krolicki also pointed with pride to the Prepaid College Tuition Program he described as one of the best and most successful in the country.
As lieutenant governor, he cited the growth of tourism from Asia.
“It’s grown exponentially, extraordinarily,” he said. “That piece of the tourism puzzle was incredibly helpful if not a saving grace for Nevada’s tourism economy when the economy turned sour.”
During his tenure, he said Chinese tourism to the U.S. expanded from 150,000 to 1.8 million tourism visas last year.
He said the growth potential in both tourism and economic development in Asia is still “game changing” for Nevada.
His first six years as lieutenant governor, he also was head of the Economic Development Commission. The operation was reorganized two years ago under a board now headed by the governor himself.
“I think we brought some incredible companies to Nevada,” he said.
Krolicki said the job of presiding as president of the Senate during the Legislature was a different but just as interesting task.
“In the office of lieutenant governor, you can largely control what you do on a given day,” he said. “You have an agenda and schedule your professional life to accomplish those goals.”
Not so the Legislature.
The Legislature, he said, “has built in inefficiencies.”
“It’s just ripe for frustration,” he said.
When Republicans ran the Senate, he said he was intimately familiar with what was going on because he always participated in the GOP caucuses.
“I understood why caucus debates were happening, understood why delays were there. There’s strategy in that and fatigue is a strategy in the Legislature.”
The low point for Krolicki was the indictment by Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto’s office accusing him of misusing and appropriating state money and using it for an advertising campaign critics charge benefitted his election.
Those charges were eventually thrown out by a judge.
“I’m still waiting for an apology from General Masto for my family for the incredible time she had that on our heads,” he said.
Krolicki said the summary judgment dismissing the indictment was “a clear example of the incompetence of the prosecutor.”
He said that ended the case because “no prosecutors in this state, no district attorney, no city attorney was willing to accept the case.”
He said during last year’s campaign it was a huge relief not to be campaigning and trying to raise money for an election. He said he’s looking forward to not being in office at least for a while.
“I think it’s healthy to step away,” Krolicki said. “I’d like to get some new strings for my guitar (and) golf — my woods are still made out of wood.”