GALE A. NORTON Biography - Polititians


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Name: Gale Ann Norton                                                               
Born: 11 March 1954 Wichita, Kansas                                                 
Gale Ann Norton (born March 11, 1954) served as the 48th United States Secretary     
of the Interior from 2001 to 2006 under President George W. Bush. She was the       
first woman to hold the position.                                                   
Norton was born and raised in Wichita, Kansas and graduated magna cum laude and     
Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Denver in 1975 and earned her Juris Doctor     
degree with honors from the same university in 1978. She is married to John         
Hughes. In the late 1970s, she was a member of the Libertarian Party and was         
nearly selected as its national director in 1980. Norton has been associated         
with a number of groups in the "wise use" or "free-market environmentalist"         
movement, such as the Property and Environmental Research Center, of which           
she is a fellow. She also worked as Assistant to the Deputy Secretary of             
Agriculture and, from 1979 to 1983, as a Senior Attorney for the Mountain States     
Legal Foundation.                                                                   
Gale Norton stands by President George W. Bush and other dignitaries for the         
signing of a bill.                                                                   
From 1991 to 1999, Norton served as Attorney General of Colorado. Prior to her       
election as Colorado Attorney General, Norton served in Washington, D.C. as         
Associate Solicitor of the United States Department of the Interior, overseeing     
endangered species and public lands legal issues for the National Park Service       
and the Fish and Wildlife Service.                                                   
In 1996, she was a candidate for the Republican nomination for the U.S. Senate,     
but was defeated by then-Congressman Wayne Allard. Before being named Interior       
Secretary in 2001, Norton was senior counsel at Brownstein, Hyatt & Farber, P.C.,   
a Denver-based law firm. The firm was listed with the U.S. Congress as a             
lobbyist for NL Industries, formerly known as National Lead Company.                 
In 2004, Norton was mentioned as a possible candidate for the U.S. Senate in her     
home state of Colorado, after the incumbent, Ben Nighthorse Campbell, decided to     
retire. However, she ultimately decided against it, and the seat was won by         
Democrat Ken Salazar.                                                               
Norton resigned as Secretary of the Interior in March 2006. She was succeeded by     
Idaho Governor Dirk Kempthorne.