Jim Leach
James Albert Smith "Jim" Leach (born October 15, 1942) is a former member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Iowa
Iowa is a state located in the Midwestern United States, an area often referred to as the "American Heartland". It derives its name from the Ioway people, one of the many American Indian tribes that occupied the state at the time of European exploration. Iowa was a part of the French colony of New...

. In August 2009, he became Chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities
National Endowment for the Humanities
The National Endowment for the Humanities is an independent federal agency of the United States established by the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act of 1965 dedicated to supporting research, education, preservation, and public programs in the humanities. The NEH is located at...


Prior to his appointment as NEH chairman, Leach was the John L. Weinberg Visiting Professor of Public and International Affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University
Princeton University
Princeton University is a private research university located in Princeton, New Jersey, United States. The school is one of the eight universities of the Ivy League, and is one of the nine Colonial Colleges founded before the American Revolution....

He also served as the interim director of the Institute of Politics at the John F. Kennedy School of Government
John F. Kennedy School of Government
The John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University is a public policy and public administration school, and one of Harvard's graduate and professional schools...

 at Harvard University
Harvard University
Harvard University is a private Ivy League university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States, established in 1636 by the Massachusetts legislature. Harvard is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and the first corporation chartered in the country...

 from September 17, 2007, to September 1, 2008, when Bill Purcell was appointed permanent director.

Previously, Leach served 30 years (1977–2007) as a Republican member of the United States House of Representatives
United States House of Representatives
The United States House of Representatives is one of the two Houses of the United States Congress, the bicameral legislature which also includes the Senate.The composition and powers of the House are established in Article One of the Constitution...

, representing (numbered as the 1st District from 1977 to 2003). In Congress
United States Congress
The United States Congress is the bicameral legislature of the federal government of the United States, consisting of the Senate and the House of Representatives. The Congress meets in the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C....

, Leach chaired the House Committee on Banking and Financial Services (1995–2001) and was a senior member of the House Committee on International Relations, serving as Chair of the Committee’s Subcommittee on Asian and Pacific Affairs (2001–2006). He also founded and served as co-chair of the Congressional Humanities Caucus. He lost his 2006 re-election bid to Democrat Dave Loebsack of Mount Vernon, IA.

Leach authored legislation on a range of issues including:
  • the creation of an international AIDS
    Acquired immune deficiency syndrome or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome is a disease of the human immune system caused by the human immunodeficiency virus...

     Trust Fund,
  • debt relief
    Debt relief
    Debt relief is the partial or total forgiveness of debt, or the slowing or stopping of debt growth, owed by individuals, corporations, or nations. From antiquity through the 19th century, it refers to domestic debts, in particular agricultural debts and freeing of debt slaves...

     for the world’s poorest countries,
  • authorization of an International Monetary Fund
    International Monetary Fund
    The International Monetary Fund is an organization of 187 countries, working to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world...

     quota increase,
  • making the Peace Corps
    Peace Corps
    The Peace Corps is an American volunteer program run by the United States Government, as well as a government agency of the same name. The mission of the Peace Corps includes three goals: providing technical assistance, helping people outside the United States to understand US culture, and helping...

     an independent federal agency,
  • requiring the federal government to use soy ink
    Soy ink
    Soy ink is a kind of ink made from soybeans. As opposed to traditional petroleum-based ink, soy-based ink is more environmentally friendly, might provide more accurate colors, and makes it easier to recycle paper...

  • prohibiting Internet gambling,
  • restraining federal employee growth, and
  • redressing certain Holocaust asset losses.

The legislation he is perhaps best known for is the 1999 Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act
Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act
The Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act , also known as the Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999, is an act of the 106th United States Congress...

, one of the seminal pieces of banking legislation of the 20th century.


Leach was born in Davenport, Iowa
Davenport, Iowa
Davenport is a city located along the Mississippi River in Scott County, Iowa, United States. Davenport is the county seat of and largest city in Scott County. Davenport was founded on May 14, 1836 by Antoine LeClaire and was named for his friend, George Davenport, a colonel during the Black Hawk...

, and won the 1960 state wrestling
Wrestling is a form of grappling type techniques such as clinch fighting, throws and takedowns, joint locks, pins and other grappling holds. A wrestling bout is a physical competition, between two competitors or sparring partners, who attempt to gain and maintain a superior position...

 championship at the 138-pound weight class for Davenport High School. He received a Bachelor of Arts
Bachelor of Arts
A Bachelor of Arts , from the Latin artium baccalaureus, is a bachelor's degree awarded for an undergraduate course or program in either the liberal arts, the sciences, or both...

 degree in politics
Politics is a process by which groups of people make collective decisions. The term is generally applied to the art or science of running governmental or state affairs, including behavior within civil governments, but also applies to institutions, fields, and special interest groups such as the...

 from Princeton University
Princeton University
Princeton University is a private research university located in Princeton, New Jersey, United States. The school is one of the eight universities of the Ivy League, and is one of the nine Colonial Colleges founded before the American Revolution....

 in 1964, where he became a member of The Ivy Club
The Ivy Club
The Ivy Club is the oldest eating club at Princeton University. It was founded in 1879 with Arthur Hawley Scribner as its first head. The members of each class are selected through the bicker process, a series of ten screening interviews, which are followed by discussions amongst the members as...

, and a Master of Arts
Master of Arts (postgraduate)
A Master of Arts from the Latin Magister Artium, is a type of Master's degree awarded by universities in many countries. The M.A. is usually contrasted with the M.S. or M.Sc. degrees...

 degree in Soviet studies
Russian Studies
Russian studies is a field of study first developed during the Cold War. It is an interdisciplinary field crossing history and language studies. It is closely related to Soviet and Communist studies...

 from Johns Hopkins University
Johns Hopkins University
The Johns Hopkins University, commonly referred to as Johns Hopkins, JHU, or simply Hopkins, is a private research university based in Baltimore, Maryland, United States...

 in 1966. He later did further Soviet research at the London School of Economics
London School of Economics
The London School of Economics and Political Science is a public research university specialised in the social sciences located in London, United Kingdom, and a constituent college of the federal University of London...

, where he studied under Leonard Schapiro
Leonard Schapiro
Leonard Bertram Naman Schapiro was a British academic and scholar of Russian politics. He taught for many years at the London School of Economics, where he was Professor of Political Science with Special Reference to Russian Studies...

, the foremost expert on Soviet affairs. Prior to entering the United States Foreign Service
United States Foreign Service
The United States Foreign Service is a component of the United States federal government under the aegis of the United States Department of State. It consists of approximately 11,500 professionals carrying out the foreign policy of the United States and aiding U.S...

, he was a staffer for then U.S. Rep. Donald Rumsfeld
Donald Rumsfeld
Donald Henry Rumsfeld is an American politician and businessman. Rumsfeld served as the 13th Secretary of Defense from 1975 to 1977 under President Gerald Ford, and as the 21st Secretary of Defense from 2001 to 2006 under President George W. Bush. He is both the youngest and the oldest person to...

. While in the Foreign Service, he was a delegate to the Geneva Disarmament Conference and the U.N. General Assembly. In 1973, Leach resigned his commission in protest of the Saturday Night Massacre
Saturday night massacre
The "Saturday Night Massacre" was the term given by political commentators to U.S. President Richard Nixon's executive dismissal of independent special prosecutor Archibald Cox, and the resignations of Attorney General Elliot Richardson and Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus on October 20,...

 when Richard Nixon
Richard Nixon
Richard Milhous Nixon was the 37th President of the United States, serving from 1969 to 1974. The only president to resign the office, Nixon had previously served as a US representative and senator from California and as the 36th Vice President of the United States from 1953 to 1961 under...

 fired his Attorney General, Elliot Richardson
Elliot Richardson
Elliot Lee Richardson was an American lawyer and politician who was a member of the cabinet of Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford. As U.S...

, and the independent counsel investigating the Watergate break-in, Archibald Cox
Archibald Cox
Archibald Cox, Jr., was an American lawyer and law professor who served as U.S. Solicitor General under President John F. Kennedy. He became known as the first special prosecutor for the Watergate scandal. During his career, he was a pioneering expert on labor law and also an authority on...


After returning to Iowa to head a family business, Leach was elected in 1976 to Congress (defeating two-term Democrat Edward Mezvinsky
Edward Mezvinsky
Edward "Ed" Mezvinsky is a former congressman. A Democrat, he represented Iowa's 1st congressional district in the United States House of Representatives for two terms, from 1973 to 1977....

), where he came to be a leader of a small band of moderate Republicans. He chaired two national organizations dedicated to moderate Republican causes: the Ripon Society
Ripon Society
The Ripon Society is an American centrist Republican think tank based in Washington, D.C. They produce The Ripon Forum, the Nation's longest running Republican thought and opinion journal....

 and the Republican Mainstream Committee. He also served as president of the largest international association of legislators—Parliamentarians for Global Action
Parliamentarians for Global Action
Parliamentarians for Global Action is a non-profit and non-partisan international organization of more than 1,300 free elected legislators from 130 democratic countries . It was established circa 1978 as Parliamentarians for World Order engaged in a range of action-oriented initiatives that promote...

. He was reelected 14 times.

During his 15 terms in Congress, Leach's voting record was generally conservative on fiscal issues, moderate on social matters, and progressive
Progressivism in the United States
Progressivism in the United States is a broadly based reform movement that reached its height early in the 20th century and is generally considered to be middle class and reformist in nature. It arose as a response to the vast changes brought by modernization, such as the growth of large...

 in foreign policy. As Chairman of the Arms Control and Foreign Policy Caucus, he pressed for a Comprehensive Test Ban and led the first House debate on a nuclear freeze. He objected to military unilateralism as reflected in the Iran-Contra policy of the 1980s. He pushed for full funding of U.S. obligations to the United Nations, supported U.S. re-entry into UNESCO
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations...

, and opposed U.S. withdrawal from the compulsory jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice
International Court of Justice
The International Court of Justice is the primary judicial organ of the United Nations. It is based in the Peace Palace in The Hague, Netherlands...


While he supported the first Gulf War
Gulf War
The Persian Gulf War , commonly referred to as simply the Gulf War, was a war waged by a U.N.-authorized coalition force from 34 nations led by the United States, against Iraq in response to Iraq's invasion and annexation of Kuwait.The war is also known under other names, such as the First Gulf...

 in 1991, Leach voted against the authorization to use force against Iraq in 2002. He was one of only six House Republicans to vote against the resolution. Once the Congress committed to war, however, he held that it would be folly to assume it could be funded with tax cuts and therefore he was the only Republican to vote against the 2003 tax cut.

Leach supported abortion rights except during the third trimester but also opposed public funding of abortion. Leach was a supporter of stem cell research.

Leach supported campaign reform and pressed unsuccessfully for a system of partial public financing of elections whereby small contributions could be matched by federal funds with accompanying limits on the amounts that could be spent in campaigns including the personal resources candidates could put in their own races. In his own campaigns, Leach did not accept donations from outside of Iowa.

As a member of the minority for his first nine terms, he became known for the development of three reports – one in the 1980s calling for a more progressive approach to Central American politics; a second in the early 1990s on reforming the United Nations written for a national commission he legislatively established and later chaired; and the third issued when he was ranking minority member of the Banking Committee on the challenges of regulating derivatives
Derivative (finance)
A derivative instrument is a contract between two parties that specifies conditions—in particular, dates and the resulting values of the underlying variables—under which payments, or payoffs, are to be made between the parties.Under U.S...


In the wake of a 1996 Ethics Committee probe of then Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich
Newt Gingrich
Newton Leroy "Newt" Gingrich is a U.S. Republican Party politician who served as the House Minority Whip from 1989 to 1995 and as the 58th Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1995 to 1999....

, which cited the Speaker for providing false information under oath to a House committee, Leach broke ranks with tradition and voted against his party's nominee for Speaker in the subsequent Congress. In one of the few occasions in the 20th century when any party division was recorded on the initial leadership organizing votes on the House floor, he voted for the former Republican leader, Bob Michel
Robert H. Michel
Robert Henry "Bob" Michel is an American Republican Party politician who was a member of the United States House of Representatives for 38 years. He represented central Illinois' 18th congressional district, and was the GOP leader in Congress, serving as Minority Leader for 14 years during an era...

, and received two votes himself, causing Leach to take a distant third in the contest for Speaker of the 105th Congress behind Gingrich and the Democratic nominee, Dick Gephardt
Dick Gephardt
Richard Andrew "Dick" Gephardt is a lobbyist and former prominent American politician of the Democratic Party. Gephardt served as a U.S. Representative from Missouri from January 3, 1977, until January 3, 2005, serving as House Majority Leader from 1989 to 1995, and as Minority Leader from 1995 to...


Leach played a pivotal role in the House's investigation of the Whitewater scandal. In the 1980s he had objected to political misjudgments that lengthened and deepened losses in the savings and loan industry. Because criminal referrals had been lodged by a federal agency against President Clinton, his wife, and their partners in a real estate venture for their role in the failure of a modest-sized Arkansas S&L, Leach as chairman of the House Banking Committee held four days of hearings (all in the same week) on the causes and consequences of the failure. While federal taxpayer losses (approximately $70 million) associated with this particular S&L were not as large as with bigger institutions around the country, no S&L anywhere failed with a higher percentage of losses relative to assets than the one in Arkansas.

In the end, the Independent Counsel brought more than 50 criminal convictions related to the failed S&L, including cases against Clinton’s successor as Governor of Arkansas, Jim Guy Tucker
Jim Guy Tucker
James "Jim" Guy Tucker, Jr. is an Arkansas political figure. He served as the 43rd Governor of Arkansas, the 11th Lieutenant Governor of Arkansas, Arkansas Attorney General, and U.S. Representative...

, and his business partners in Whitewater.

Leach did not think that the crimes surrounding the failure of the Whitewater-tied S&L should have been considered in an impeachment framework. Like many in Congress, he was surprised that the Justice Department
United States Department of Justice
The United States Department of Justice , is the United States federal executive department responsible for the enforcement of the law and administration of justice, equivalent to the justice or interior ministries of other countries.The Department is led by the Attorney General, who is nominated...

 chose to refer certain sex-related charges to Kenneth Starr
Kenneth Starr
Kenneth Winston "Ken" Starr is an American lawyer and educational administrator who has also been a federal judge. He is best known for his investigation of figures during the Clinton administration....

, the Whitewater Independent Counsel, and even more so when Starr chose subsequently to refer certain of them to the Congress. But in what he described as a close judgment call, Leach voted for the article of impeachment
Impeachment is a formal process in which an official is accused of unlawful activity, the outcome of which, depending on the country, may include the removal of that official from office as well as other punishment....

 that related to felonious lying under oath.

Leach was usually reelected without much difficulty (including an unopposed run in 1994), even as his district turned increasingly Democratic, especially from the 1990s onward. For most of his career, he represented the Democratic strongholds of Davenport, Cedar Rapids and Iowa City. The district has not supported a Republican for president since 1984, and most of its state legislators are Democrats. The district became even more Democratic after the 2000 census, in which it was renumbered the 2nd District. This was despite the fact that Davenport, which had anchored the district for decades, was drawn into the 1st District (previously the 2nd District). Leach seriously considered running against fellow Republican Jim Nussle
Jim Nussle
James Allen "Jim" Nussle is an American politician and was the director of the Office of Management and Budget. Nussle was a Republican member of the United States House of Representatives from 1991 to 2007...

 in the 1st District primary. Had he done so, it was considered very likely that the reconfigured 2nd would have been taken by a Democrat. However, Leach opted to move to Iowa City in the reconfigured 2nd and won reelection two more times. Still, it was considered very likely that Leach would be succeeded by a Democrat once he retired.

Gramm-Leach-Bliley Financial Services Modernization Act

The Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act
Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act
The Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act , also known as the Financial Services Modernization Act of 1999, is an act of the 106th United States Congress...

, also known as the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Financial Services Modernization Act, Pub. L. No. 106-102, 113 Stat. 1338 (November 12, 1999), is an Act of the United States Congress which repealed part of the Glass–Steagall Act, opening up competition among banks, securities companies and insurance companies. The Glass–Steagall Act prohibited a bank from offering investment, commercial banking, and insurance services.

This act of deregulation has been cited as one reason for the sub-prime mortgage crisis.

2006 election

In 2006, however, Leach was toppled in a considerable upset by Democrat Dave Loebsack, a political science professor at Cornell College
Cornell College
Cornell College is a private liberal arts college in Mount Vernon, Iowa. Originally called the Iowa Conference Seminary, the school was founded in 1853 by Reverend Samuel M. Fellows...

. Loebsack had only qualified for the Democratic primary as a write-in candidate, and Leach was not on many Democratic target lists. However, Loebsack managed to defeat Leach by a narrow 6,000-vote margin, largely by running up an 8,395-vote margin in the Iowa City area.

In conjunction with a Democratic tide which swept Eastern Iowa in the election, there were two tipping factors in Leach’s defeat. The first was his refusal to allow Republican Party activists to distribute an anti-gay mailing. When Leach told the Republican National Committee
Republican National Committee
The Republican National Committee is an American political committee that provides national leadership for the Republican Party of the United States. It is responsible for developing and promoting the Republican political platform, as well as coordinating fundraising and election strategy. It is...

 that he would leave the Republican caucus if they proceeded with such divisive tactics, social conservatives
Social conservatism
Social Conservatism is primarily a political, and usually morally influenced, ideology that focuses on the preservation of what are seen as traditional values. Social conservatism is a form of authoritarianism often associated with the position that the federal government should have a greater role...

 were offended and refused to back him.

The second related to his success just before adjournment in passing H.R. 4411. Gambling interests opposed him during the election and contended the bill had passed without hearings. The bill had been subject to extensive hearings over several Congresses, especially on the House side where both the Financial Services
United States House Committee on Financial Services
The United States House Committee on Financial Services is the committee of the United States House of Representatives that oversees the entire financial services industry, including the securities, insurance, banking, and housing industries...

 and the Judiciary
United States House Committee on the Judiciary
The U.S. House Committee on the Judiciary, also called the House Judiciary Committee, is a standing committee of the United States House of Representatives. It is charged with overseeing the administration of justice within the federal courts, administrative agencies and Federal law enforcement...

 committees had shared jurisdiction. Leach argued that Internet gambling weakened the economy and jeopardized the social fabric of the family.

Post-congressional career

After his defeat, Leach’s name was floated as a potential replacement to John Bolton
John R. Bolton
John Robert Bolton is an American lawyer and diplomat who has served in several Republican presidential administrations. He served as the U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations from August 2005 until December 2006 on a recess appointment...

 as Ambassador to the United Nations. On December 8, 2006, Leach’s House colleagues Earl Blumenauer
Earl Blumenauer
Earl Blumenauer is the U.S. Representative for , serving since 1996. He is a member of the Democratic Party. The district includes most of Portland east of the Willamette River. A native of Portland, he previously spent over 20 years as a public official representing the city.-Early...

 (D-Oregon) and Jim Walsh
James T. Walsh
James Thomas "Jim" Walsh is an American Republican politician from Syracuse, New York. In 2009, he retired after representing a portion of Central New York, that is now known as the state's 25th Congressional District, in the United States House of Representatives for twenty years.-Early...

 (R-New York) sent a letter to President George W. Bush
George W. Bush
George Walker Bush is an American politician who served as the 43rd President of the United States, from 2001 to 2009. Before that, he was the 46th Governor of Texas, having served from 1995 to 2000....

 urging the President to nominate Leach for the post. However, the nomination instead went to the United States Ambassador to Iraq, Zalmay Khalilzad
Zalmay Khalilzad
Zalmay Mamozy Khalilzad is a counselor at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and president of Khalilzad Associates, an international business consulting firm based in Washington, DC. He was the United States Ambassador to the United Nations under President George W. Bush...


Leach then taught at Princeton and served on the board of several public companies and four non-profit organizations, including the Century Foundation, the Kettering Foundation
Kettering Foundation
The Kettering Foundation is an American non-partisan research foundation founded in 1927 by Charles F. Kettering. The foundation publishes books and periodicals, employs research fellows, and organizes public forums on policy in order to answer the question: "what does it take for democracy to...

 and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
The Carnegie Endowment for International Peace is a foreign-policy think tank based in Washington, D.C. The organization describes itself as being dedicated to advancing cooperation between nations and promoting active international engagement by the United States...

. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations
Council on Foreign Relations
The Council on Foreign Relations is an American nonprofit nonpartisan membership organization, publisher, and think tank specializing in U.S. foreign policy and international affairs...

 and formerly served as a trustee
Trustee is a legal term which, in its broadest sense, can refer to any person who holds property, authority, or a position of trust or responsibility for the benefit of another...

 of Princeton University.

Leach holds eight honorary degrees and has received decorations from two foreign governments. He is the recipient of the Wayne Morse Integrity in Politics Award, the Woodrow Wilson Award from Johns Hopkins, the Adlai Stevenson Award from the United Nations Association, and the Edger Wayburn Award from the Sierra Club
Sierra Club
The Sierra Club is the oldest, largest, and most influential grassroots environmental organization in the United States. It was founded on May 28, 1892, in San Francisco, California, by the conservationist and preservationist John Muir, who became its first president...

. A three-sport athlete in college, Leach was elected to the Wrestling Hall of Fame in Stillwater, Oklahoma
Stillwater, Oklahoma
Stillwater is a city in north-central Oklahoma at the intersection of U.S. 177 and State Highway 51. It is the county seat of Payne County, Oklahoma, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 45,688. Stillwater is the principal city of the Stillwater Micropolitan Statistical...

, and the International Wrestling Hall of Fame in Waterloo, Iowa
Waterloo, Iowa
Waterloo is a city in and the county seat of Black Hawk County, Iowa, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census the population decreased by 0.5% to 68,406. Waterloo is part of the Waterloo – Cedar Falls Metropolitan Statistical Area, and is the more populous of the two...


On September 17, 2007, Leach was named as Interim Director of the Institute of Politics (IOP) at Harvard
Harvard University
Harvard University is a private Ivy League university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States, established in 1636 by the Massachusetts legislature. Harvard is the oldest institution of higher learning in the United States and the first corporation chartered in the country...

's Kennedy School of Government after former director Jeanne Shaheen
Jeanne Shaheen
Jeanne Shaheen is an American politician, a member of the Democratic Party, and the Senior United States Senator from New Hampshire. The first woman in U.S. history to be elected as both a Governor and U.S. Senator, she was the first woman to be elected Governor of New Hampshire, serving from...

 left to pursue a U.S. Senate seat in New Hampshire.

Leach resides in Iowa City and Princeton with his wife Elisabeth (Deba), son Gallagher, and daughter Jenny.

On August 12, 2008, Leach broke party ranks to endorse Democrat Barack Obama
Barack Obama
Barack Hussein Obama II is the 44th and current President of the United States. He is the first African American to hold the office. Obama previously served as a United States Senator from Illinois, from January 2005 until he resigned following his victory in the 2008 presidential election.Born in...

 over fellow Republican John McCain
John McCain
John Sidney McCain III is the senior United States Senator from Arizona. He was the Republican nominee for president in the 2008 United States election....

 in the 2008 U.S. presidential election
United States presidential election, 2008
The United States presidential election of 2008 was the 56th quadrennial presidential election. It was held on November 4, 2008. Democrat Barack Obama, then the junior United States Senator from Illinois, defeated Republican John McCain, the senior U.S. Senator from Arizona. Obama received 365...

. He spoke at the 2008 Democratic National Convention
2008 Democratic National Convention
The United States 2008 Democratic National Convention was a quadrennial presidential nominating convention of the Democratic Party where it adopted its national platform and officially nominated its candidates for President and Vice President of the United States. The convention was held in Denver,...

 in Denver
Denver, Colorado
The City and County of Denver is the capital and the most populous city of the U.S. state of Colorado. Denver is a consolidated city-county, located in the South Platte River Valley on the western edge of the High Plains just east of the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains...

, Colorado
Colorado is a U.S. state that encompasses much of the Rocky Mountains as well as the northeastern portion of the Colorado Plateau and the western edge of the Great Plains...

, on the night of August 25, 2008. He was introduced by Senator Tom Harkin
Tom Harkin
Thomas Richard "Tom" Harkin is the junior United States Senator from Iowa and a member of the Democratic Party. He previously served in the United States House of Representatives ....

, a fellow Iowan.

On November 14 and 15, 2008, Leach and former Clinton Secretary of State
United States Secretary of State
The United States Secretary of State is the head of the United States Department of State, concerned with foreign affairs. The Secretary is a member of the Cabinet and the highest-ranking cabinet secretary both in line of succession and order of precedence...

 Madeleine Albright
Madeleine Albright
Madeleine Korbelová Albright is the first woman to become a United States Secretary of State. She was appointed by U.S. President Bill Clinton on December 5, 1996, and was unanimously confirmed by a U.S. Senate vote of 99–0...

 served as emissaries for President-elect Obama at the international economic summit being held in Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C.
Washington, D.C., formally the District of Columbia and commonly referred to as Washington, "the District", or simply D.C., is the capital of the United States. On July 16, 1790, the United States Congress approved the creation of a permanent national capital as permitted by the U.S. Constitution....

On June 3, 2009, President Obama announced that he intended to nominate Leach as Chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities
National Endowment for the Humanities
The National Endowment for the Humanities is an independent federal agency of the United States established by the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act of 1965 dedicated to supporting research, education, preservation, and public programs in the humanities. The NEH is located at...

. The appointment was confirmed in August, 2009.

External links

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