Connecticut State Senator Andrew Roraback Named to the Aspen Institute’s Second Class of Aspen-Rodel Fellows

September 25, 2006

Washington, DC, September 11, 2006––Following an eight-month search involving input from more than 1,400 business, political, and civic leaders, the Aspen Institute has selected Connecticut State Senator Andrew Roraback as one of 24 top young elected officials for a fellowship program honoring public leaders.

This class of 24 Fellows, drawn from the ranks of federal, state, and local governments, and representing 21 states, forms the second two-year class of the Aspen-Rodel Fellowships in Public Leadership, designed to bring together “the very best of the nation’s emerging leaders” to discuss broad issues of democratic governance and effective public service.

Senator Roraback, who is serving his third term in the State Senate, previously served in the Connecticut House of Representatives. He has a bachelor’s degree from Yale and a law degree from the University of Virginia. Upon being named as an Aspen-Rodel Fellow Senator Roraback said, “I am extremely honored to have been selected to join this diverse group of leaders from throughout the nation. I am very enthusiastic about the prospect of spending time with individuals who represent such a wide range of political philosophies, all of whom have proven to be effective public servants.”

Former Congressman Mickey Edwards, the program’s director, said the new fellowship class “represents the true promise of America––an outstanding group of young leaders with a clear commitment to putting the nation’s interest ahead of partisan considerations.” Edwards said the selection process involved looking for young officials who had not only earned reputations for thoughtfulness and intelligence, but who had also been recognized for “their willingness to cross party lines and their ability to remain focused on the ideals that had led them into public service in the first place.”

The Institute’s Rodel Fellowships in Leadership program brings together bipartisan groups of public officials judged to be the rising stars of American politics. The Fellows are selected in a months-long nomination and selection process that involves more than 1,400 businesses, professional, and civic leaders, and an advisory committee of more than 50 leading political figures.

This class of Fellows will meet for the first time in late November 2006 for a three-day conversation centered on the underlying values and principles of a democratic society. This second class includes 12 Republicans and 12 Democrats, bringing the total number of Rodel Fellows to 48, drawn from 34 states, including members of Congress, as well as state and local officials.

Congressman Edwards described the program’s goals as twofold: “in a political world in which partisanship has become increasingly bitter and public decision-making has become increasingly polarized, we’re working to help a new generation of public leaders build lasting relationships across party lines, and at the same time, we’re trying to sharpen the focus of the political conversation on our common goals as members of a diverse democracy.”

Aspen Institute President Walter Isaacson said the Rodel Fellows “represent the best hope for America’s future—upcoming leaders committed to working together for the common good.”

These are the 24 young leaders selected as among the very best, brightest, and most promising members of America’s emerging political leadership:

Texas State Representative Rafael Anchia;
Andre Bauer, Lieutenant Governor of South Carolina;
Laura Brod, Assistant Majority Leader of the Minnesota state House of Representatives;
Bronx Borough President Adolfo Carrión, Jr.;
Jeff Cloud, chairman of the Oklahoma Corporation Commission;
Eric Garcetti, president of the Los Angeles City Council;
San Francisco District Attorney Kamala Harris;
Jon Husted, Speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives;
Judge Dianne Jones, Dallas County Criminal Court;
New Jersey State Senator Ellen Karcher;
Chuck Larson, former Iowa State Representative and State Senator;
Lisa Madigan, Attorney General of Illinois;
Delaware State Treasurer Jack Markell;
Vermont Secretary of State Deborah Markowitz;
Lynette Boggs McDonald, county commissioner, Nevada;
Rob McKenna, Washington State Attorney General;
Indiana Secretary of State Todd Rokita;
Andrew Roraback, Connecticut State Senate;
State Representative Deborah Ross of North Carolina;
Pennsylvania State Representative Josh Shapiro;
Greg Stanton, Phoenix City Council;
Arizona State Representative Leah Landrum Taylor;
Kansas Secretary of State Ron Thornburgh;
Darren White, Sheriff of Bernalillo County (Albuquerque), New Mexico.

The Aspen Institute-Rodel Fellowships in Public Leadership seeks to enhance our democracy by identifying and bringing together the nation’s most promising young political leaders to explore, through study and conversation, the underlying values and principles of western democracy, the relationship between individuals and their community, and the responsibilities of public leadership; to support and inspire political leaders committed to sustaining the vision of a political system based on thoughtful and civil bipartisan dialogue; and to help America’s brightest young leaders achieve their fullest potential in public service.

For additional information concerning the Aspen Institute-Rodel Fellowships in Public Leadership, please contact the program’s assistant director, Ms. Gia Regan, at 202-736-2525 or at [email protected]. In addition, more information on Rodel Fellows and the program can be found at

The Aspen Institute, founded in 1950, is an international nonprofit dedicated to fostering enlightened leadership and open-minded dialogue. Through seminars, policy programs, conferences and leadership development initiatives, the Institute and its international partners seek to promote nonpartisan inquiry and an appreciation for timeless values. The Institute is headquartered in Washington, DC, and has campuses in Aspen, Colorado, and on the Wye River on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Its international network includes partner Aspen Institutes in Berlin, Rome, Lyon, Tokyo, and New Delhi, and leadership programs in Africa and Central America.