- Speaker Bios
- Conference Flyer (PDF)
- Introduction by Dr. Siewert (PDF)
- Dr. Harbridge on declining Bipartisanship (PDF)
Former U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe served as a U.S. Senator for Maine from 1995 to 2013 and as a Representative in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1979 to 1995. Senator Snowe gained a reputation as one of the Congress’ leading moderates by focusing her attention on efforts to build bipartisan consensus on key issues. In 1999, she was cited by Congressional Quarterly for her centrist leadership, and was co-chair of a bipartisan, consensus building group in the Senate called the Common Ground Coalition, a forum for communication and cooperation between Senate Democrats and Republicans. Senator Snowe is only the fourth woman in history to be elected to both houses of Congress and the first woman in American history to serve in both houses of a state legislature and both houses of Congress. When first elected to Congress in 1978 at the age of 31, Senator Snowe was the youngest Republican woman, and the first Greek-American woman, ever elected to Congress.
State Legislative Dysfunction Panel
Former Missouri Senator Tim Green is a retired member of the Missouri State Senate. He was first elected to the Missouri House of Representatives in 1988, serving until 2002, including service as the chairman of the Budget Committee from 2000 to 2002. In 2004, he was elected to the Missouri State Senate representing the 13th District, serving until 2013, including a stint as the State Senate Minority Caucus Leader. Senator Green was a delegate at the Democratic National Convention in 1992 and has served as President of the Missouri State Building and Construction Trades Council, AFL-CIO. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration from University of Missouri-St. Louis.
Former Speaker Catherine Hanaway is an attorney at the Husch and Blackwell law firm. She was first elected to the Missouri House of Representatives representing the 87th District 1998. After her first term in office, she was elected the House Minority Leader, and in 2002 became the first female Speaker of the Missouri House, serving until 2004. In 2005, she was nominated by President George W. Bush to be the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Missouri, a position she held until 2009. Speaker Hanaway earned her law degree from the Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C.
Missouri Senator Will Kraus was first elected to the Missouri House of Representatives in 2004. He was re-elected in 2006 and 2008 respectively. In 2010, he won the seat for the State Senator for the 8th District. He has served as Vice-Chair on both the Missouri House of Representatives’ Utilities and Health Care Policy Committees, and has also served on the Job Creation and Economic Development Committee. Senator Kraus has won awards such as the VFW Legislator of the Year and the “A Better Missouri for Children Award” from the Missouri PTA. He earned his Bachelors of Science in Business Administration from Central Missouri State University in 1997.
Missouri Representative Margo McNeil was first elected to the House in 2008 representing District 69, including parts of Florissant, Hazelwood, and unincorporated St. Louis County. Re-elected in 2010. 2012 and 2014 Rep. McNeil has served on the Higher Education, Elementary and Secondary Education, and Education Appropriations committees, as well as the Rules committee (among others), and serves as the Chair of the Democratic Education Caucus. Prior to serving in office Rep. McNeil was a teacher in the Ferguson Florissant School District for 22 years, served on the St. Louis Community College Board of Trustees, and is the recipient of the Jim Coen Silver Citizenship Award from the MNEA. She earned her BFA and MA in education from the University of Cincinnati.
Dr. Laurel Harbridge
Dr. Laurel Harbridge is Faculty Fellow at the Institute for Policy Research at Northwestern University and Assistant Professor in the Department of Political Science. Her primary areas of research and teaching include the United States Congress, congressional elections, political parties, and public policy. Her current book project, Is Bipartisanship Dead? explores how party leaders in the House of Representatives changed from prioritizing legislation with bipartisan agreement in the 1970s to prioritizing legislation with partisan disagreement by the 1990s. Her work has been published in the American Journal of Political Science, Legislative Studies Quarterly, and American Politics Research, among others. She earned her PhD at Stanford University in 2009.
Local Government Dysfunction Panel
Dr. T.R. Carr
Dr. T.R. Carr served three terms as Mayor of Hazelwood, MO, from April 2000 to May 2009. He is also professor and the Program Director of the Department of Public Administration and Policy Analysis at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville and a Senior Research Fellow with the Institute for Urban Research at SIUE. He is currently a member of the Board of North County, Incorporated and Chairman of Economic Development Committee of the Northwest Chamber of Commerce in Northwest St. Louis County. Dr. Carr also serves on the St. Louis-Samara (Russia) Sister City Committee. He is a recipient of the “Buzz Westfall Award for Excellence in Leadership” from St. Louis County Municipal League. He received his MPA and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Oklahoma.
Alderman Antonio French is serving his second term as the Alderman of the 21st Ward, representing parts of the neighborhoods of Penrose, College Hill, and O’Fallon, where he was born and raised. Prior to becoming Alderman he served the 21st Ward as the Democratic Committeeman. In 2012, Alderman French founded The North Campus, an education initiative modeled after The Harlem Children’s Zone in New York City. In 2010, the Riverfront Times awarded him the honor of “Best Local Politician.” Recently, French gained national recognition for his work covering the unrest in Ferguson, MO following the shooting of Michael Brown. Alderman French is a graduate of
Kevin O’Keefe, J.D.
Kevin O’Keefe, J.D. is currently a partner at Curtis, Heinz, Garrett & O’Keefe, P.C., and municipal attorney for a number of local municipalities. Concentrating his practice in municipal law, urban development and redevelopment, tax increment financing and other economic development tools, Mr. O’Keefe has argued trial and appellate cases in state and federal courts in Missouri and the United States Supreme Court (Quinn v. Millsap, 1989). Mr. O’Keefe’s service as municipal attorney includes consultation with executive and legislative officials on the full range of local government activity; drafting legislation and regulations; consultation and litigation concerning employment matters; review and enforcement supervision in administrative matters; coordination with consultants in other disciplines to write and implement technical codes; and responsibility for all types of local government litigation.
Former Sen. Snowe
Former U.S. Senator Olympia Snowe served as a U.S. Senator for Maine from 1995 to 2013 and as a Representative in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1979 to 1995
Alderman Antonio French
Alderman Antonio French is serving his second term as the Alderman of the 21st Ward and gained national recognition for his work
covering the unrest in Ferguson.
Former Speaker Catherine Hanaway
was first elected to the Missouri House of Representatives representing the 87th District 1998. in 2002 became the first female Speaker of the Missouri House, serving until 2004.