Rep. Caleb Rudow (Zambia 2012-2015) was the choice of Buncombe County Democratic activists to serve out the remainder of Fisher’s two-year term. Gov. Roy Cooper then appointed Rudow, as state law required. Rudow was sworn in on Feb. 1.
Rudow is the son of an Asheville attorney, Marc Rudow, and his wife Deborah Miles, is the founder and long-time Executive Director of the UNC Asheville Center for Diversity Education. A 2005 graduate of Asheville High School, Rudow majored in philosophy at UNC-Chapel Hill and later earned an MA in Public Policy from the LBJ School of Government at UT-Austin (TX).
Rudow learned Spanish under Señora Castro at Asheville High and then spent a full semester in Costa Rica—after several other trips to Central America, he expects that his fluency in Spanish will be useful in representing District 114, which has a Latinx population of 8.8% of its 90,000 residents. He also spent three years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Zambia, in south central Africa, where he lived for two years in the Eastern Province village of Mukambwe, and one year in the capital, Lusaka, working at the intersection of agriculture, forestry, and climate change.
Rudow’s business experience includes several years managing and opening Fifth Season stores that specialize in hydroponics, home brewing, and organic gardening (including opening the brewery section at the Asheville store). More recently he worked as a research and data analyst at Open Data Watch in Washington, DC, where he conducted research on open data funding, patterns of data use, and technical issues around open data policy.