ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit 2010
Byron L. Dorgan

Byron L. Dorgan

United States Senator, North Dakota

A Strong Voice for North Dakota and the Nation

U.S. Senator Byron Dorgan was raised in the southwestern North Dakota town of Regent, where his family worked in the farm equipment and petroleum business and raised cattle and horses. At age 26, he became North Dakota's youngest-ever constitutional officer when he was appointed State Tax Commissioner. First elected to Congress in 1980, Dorgan has devoted his career to fighting for the interests of rural America.

Senator Dorgan served six terms in the U.S. House of Representatives and was first elected to the U.S. Senate in 1992. He is a senior member of the Appropriations, Commerce and Energy committees. He also serves as Chairman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee and the Democratic Policy Committee.

With his experience and ever-growing influence in Congress, Senator Dorgan has worked to expand North Dakota's burgeoning energy sector, preserve a strong safety net for family farmers, and spur economic development throughout the state.

In 2002, he proposed the creation of a Red River Valley Research Corridor that would help attract research funding and high-tech companies to North Dakota. A 2006 North Dakota State University study found that the initiative created thousands of jobs and a $759 million economic impact, allowing the state's college graduates to pursue careers close to home.

Senator Dorgan is a strong advocate of energy policy that will move our country aggressively toward the use of renewable energy and domestic energy sources, and away from our dangerous reliance on foreign oil. As Chairman of the Senate Energy and Water Appropriations Subcommittee, he has worked to fund development of renewable energy sources like wind, solar and biofuels, as well as clean coal research that will help us find better ways to use the resource that fulfill 50 percent of our nation's energy needs.

As a young boy in rural North Dakota, Senator Dorgan was ingrained early in life with a deep appreciation for the family farmers and ranchers who rise before dawn every day to put food on the tables of families around the world. He has emerged as one of the nation's leading voices on behalf of America's agriculture industry.

Senator Dorgan is the author of the New York Times bestselling book "Take This Job and Ship It: How Corporate Greed and Brain-Dead Politics Are Selling Out America," and a newly released book "Reckless: How Debt, Deregulation, and Dark Money Nearly Bankrupted America (And How We Can Fix It!)."

He earned his Bachelor of Science degree from the University of North Dakota and his Master of Business Administration from the University of Denver.

Senator Dorgan is married to Kim Dorgan and has four children: Scott, Shelly (deceased), Brendon, and Haley.

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