By Sandra Meyer

Andrew Learned has served his country as an officer in the United States Navy for eight years and now he’s taking his passion for service to a new level. Learned has recently filed to run for Congress in 2018. The Valrico native believes that the time has come for him to take his experience as a military officer, economics major and a successful small businessman and direct that towards bringing common-sense leadership to Washington.

Learned grew up in Valrico, playing softball on the Bloomingdale Little League. After high school he studied Economics at the University of Tampa with a full-scholarship from the U.S. Navy. During his eight years of military service Learned has spent four of those deployed to the Middle East where he supported operations against ISIS and led teams against Somali pirates. His experiences in the Middle East taught him how to be a leader and make hard decisions.

Not one to be wasteful of his time, in 2013 Learned opened up a local branch of the franchise GradePower Learning in Valrico in between his deployments. His success was swift and in 2016 the Valrico GradePower Learning was named the #1 GradePower franchise in the nation, receiving the GradePower President’s award. It has also helped connect him even tighter to the community he loves.

Learned is now taking all of that experience to run for congress and represent the I-4 Corridor in the issues he feels affect the local community the most. “Health care is my number one issue right now. Washington is taking health care away from 50,000 people in the I-4 Corridor alone,” Learned said. He is also concerned with education, small businesses and ensuring good paying jobs for residents. “We need good paying jobs so people can earn a living here and not have to move away,” he added.

Learned believes his on-the-ground experience is what is needed in Congress. “It’s not that macro level of Congress, my experience is dealing with people on the ground. We need a congressman who is from here. I grew up here, this is my home,” Learned said.

For information on Andrew Learned and his Congressional run in 2018, visit

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