MADISON (WKOW) -- Moments after Scott Walker completed his ceremonial swearing in as Wisconsin's 45th governor, a revered predecessor offered straightforward words of advice for Governor Walker.
"Be bold," former republican governor Tommy Thompson said.
During an interview with WKOW27 News reporter Tony Galli and other members of the media, Thompson said Governor Walker must hold true to his ideals and not be dissuaded.
"Forget about the critics, forget about the naysayers and do it your way. Set a bold path and you'll be surprised how many people will follow."
During his inaugural address, Governor Walker referenced Thompson's economic agenda and ability to create 258,000 new jobs by the time Thompson's first term ended in 1991. The governor said he will try to repeat that feat.
"I think it's doable," Thompson said.
"I think we have a good chance of succeeding. I'm going to help him."
Thompson served not only fourteen years as Wisconsin's governor, but also as U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary under President Bush. Thompson is a member of the board of directors of several corporations. Thompson told Galli, his assistance to the Walker administration will be defined once there's a request for help.
"He's got to ask, he's got to ask. Whatever he wants me to do, I'll be there to help him."
Thompson acknowledged Governor Walker's challenges in job creation as the state and country try to recover from recession are different than when Thompson served. But Thompson said there were other obstacles to job creation in the late eighties and they were overcome.
Rep. Joel Kleefisch (R-Oconomowoc), whose wife, Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch was sworn in, said Governor Walker's style will foster economic growth.
"They're working closely together because he is of the belief that the more minds that are coming to the table, the better product you can come up with."
"I hope they're up to it," outgoing democratic Lieutenant Governor Barbara Lawton told WKOW27 News.
"We have to support them."