Join the Center on Global Energy Policy's Women in Energy hosted a breakfast and roundtable discussion with the Honorable Heidi Heitkamp, former North Dakota Senator. During this student-only breakfast, Sen. Heitkamp discussed her work on energy development in North Dakota and the rest of the U.S., academic and job histories, career paths, and perspectives on what it means to be a female leader in energy.
U.S. Senator Heidi Heitkamp served as the first female senator elected from North Dakota from 2013-2019. Senator Heitkamp grew up in a large family in the small town of Mantador, ND. Throughout her time in public service, Senator Heitkamp has stood up for tribal communities and worked to improve outcomes for Native American children, women, and families. The first bill she introduced in the Senate, which became law in 2016, created a Commission on Native Children. Her bill with former Senator John McCain became law to create Amber Alerts in Indian Country. She introduced Savanna’s Act to help address the crisis of missing and murdered indigenous women. On the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, Senator Heitkamp pushed to provide training and resources for first responders and worked to combat human trafficking in North Dakota, across the country, and around the world.
Senator Heitkamp has a long record with energy development in North Dakota. She continued those efforts in the Senate, working to responsibly harness North Dakota’s energy resources, and successfully pushed to lift the 40-year old ban on exporting U.S. crude oil while expanding support for renewable energies, like wind and solar energy development. Senator Heitkamp sat on the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry, where she helped write, negotiate, and pass two long-term, comprehensive Farm Bills which Congress passed.
Senator Heitkamp previously served as North Dakota’s Attorney General where she helped broker an agreement between 46 states and the tobacco industry, which forced the tobacco industry to tell the truth about smoking and health. It was one of the largest civil settlements in U.S. history. Prior to her time as Attorney General, Senator Heitkamp served as North Dakota’s Tax Commissioner. Senator Heitkamp received a B.A. from the University of North Dakota and a law degree from Lewis and Clark Law School. She currently serves as a contributor to CNBC and resides in Mandan, North Dakota with her husband.