U.S. Senator – Retired President
Ben Nighthorse Consultants, Inc.
Former U.S. Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell will be a guest speaker at our fundraising event December 1st.
Heserved 12 years (two terms) in the United States Senate. Prior to his service in the Senate, Campbell served three terms in the U.S. House of Representatives, preceded by two terms in the Colorado Legislature.
During his time in the U.S. Senate, Ben Nighthorse Campbell was a prolific legislator. In the 106th Congress, Senator Campbell ranked #1, out of 535 combined members of the U.S. Senate and U.S. House, passing the most freestanding legislation into public law. In the course of his career, he was responsible for the creation of two National Parks, Black Canyon of the Gunnison and Great Sand Dunes. Ben Nighthorse Campbell is also the only member in congressional history to have authorized the creation of two National Museums, National Museum of the American Indian and National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial and Museum. Such accomplishments could only be achieved due to his thorough understanding of the legislative process and his ability to work effectively on both sides of the aisle to achieve results.
Senator Campbell served as chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs (the only American Indian in history to chair the committee), and during his tenure, the committee passed more bipartisan, pro-Indian legislation that in any similar period in American history. Republican Campbell and his Democrat Vice-Chair Daniel Inouye worked hand-in-hand to ensure that every major piece of legislation that moved in congress had an Indian component included in it. Indian Country benefitted in areas such as health care, education, transportation, energy and water through their efforts. He is also well versed in Federal Recognition issues, the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act, and Economic Development issues in Indian Country.
Senator Campbell served as a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, where he also served as chairman of the Treasury, Postal and General Government subcommittee which, at that time, oversaw funding of not only the Treasury Department and Postal Service, but many of the nation’s federal law enforcement agencies. As a former law enforcement officer, this allowed him to work to ensure the safety of our country’s law enforcement officers and the citizens they serve. One notable accomplishment was passage of the Bulletproof Vest Partnership Act, which allowed small police forces, sheriff’s departments and tribal law enforcement entities to apply for matching funds to make lifesaving bulletproof vests affordable for officers. As an appropriator during a strong fiscal period, Campbell was able to assist states, municipalities, and worthy organizations in their efforts to assist all Americans. He was also chairman of the Legislative Branch subcommittee and sat on the Transportation subcommittee, Commerce, Justice, State and Judiciary subcommittee, Foreign Operations subcommittee, Homeland Security subcommittee, and Interior subcommittee.
Senator Campbell served as a member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, and has a strong understanding of the issues facing energy producers and consumers, as well as public land and resource management. Coming from a western state, Campbell is acutely aware of the importance of sound water policy and worked to develop and protect key water resources in the west. He served as Vice Chairman of the Water and Power subcommittee, along with his service on the National Parks subcommittee and Public Lands and Forests subcommittee.
Senator Campbell, as a veteran himself, was proud to serve on the Senate Veteran’s Affairs Committee.
Senator Campbell also served as Chairman of the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, also known as the “Helsinki Commission”.
Ben Nighthorse Campbell is a member of the Northern Cheyenne Tribe where he is honored to serve on the Council of Forty-Four Chiefs. Prior to his years of government service, Ben is a graduate of San Jose State University, and was a Special Research student at Meiji University in Tokyo, Japan. He was proud to serve his country as an Air Policeman in the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War; and as Captain of the U.S. Olympic Judo Team at the 1964 Games in Tokyo. He is a distinguished recipient of the ‘Ellis Island Medal of Freedom’ and was bestowed the ‘Order of the Rising Sun’ by Emperor Akihito of Japan.His varied and interesting life has also seen him work as a Farm Laborer, Truck Driver, Deputy Sheriff, Prison Counselor, School Teacher, Trainer of Champion Quarter Horses, Rancher, Award-Winning Jeweler, Small Businessman, and well-known motorcycle enthusiast. It should be noted, Senator Campbell is not just a ‘former’ truck driver, Ben was the only U.S. Senator who possessed a CDL, and twice delivered the National Christmas Tree from Colorado to Washington, DC and still enjoys relaxing behind the wheel of his big truck.
Today, as President of Ben Nighthorse Consultants, Inc., Senator Campbell embraces the opportunity to stay involved in public policy, using his vast experiences and resources on behalf of his clients to assist them in navigating the legislative process of Capitol Hill, and the administrative process of the Executive Branch, working with leaders of both parties to help them achieve successful resolution.