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Name: Boren, David
Current Position: Previous Co-Chairman

Prior to spending the past 15 years running the University of Oklahoma, Democrat David Boren served in the U.S. Senate, where he had the distinction of being the longest-serving chairman of the Senate’s committee on intelligence matters. This fact, more than anything else, explains why he was selected by President Barack Obama to co-chair the President’s Intelligence Advisory Board.

Born April 21, 1941, in Washington, DC, Boren is the son of Lyle Boren, who served in Congress representing Oklahoma’s 4th district from 1937 to 1947. He attended Yale University, where he was a member of the Yale Conservative Party and Skull and Bones, and served as president of the Yale Political Union. He graduated (Phi Beta Kappa) in 1963 with a degree in history.
Selected as a Rhodes Scholar, Boren went to Oxford for graduate school, earning a master’s degree in philosophy, politics, and economics in 1965. He then returned to Oklahoma for law school, and received his law degree from the University of Oklahoma in 1968.
A year earlier, he won his first elected office, becoming a member of the Oklahoma legislature in 1967. He remained in the statehouse for the next eight years, during which he served in the National Guard (eventually attaining the rank of captain during his six years of duty) and taught at Oklahoma Baptist University (1970-1974). He also served as chairman of the university’s government department.
His eight years in the legislature allowed him to build a platform for higher office. He ran for governor in 1974 at the age of 33 and won, though he only served three years in office before jumping to the U.S. Senate.
Boren was first elected to the Senate in 1978. During his 16 years as a senator he built a reputation as a conservative Democrat. He favored tax cuts across the board and voted in favor of repealing the Windfall Profit Tax on the domestic oil industry in 1988. He served on the Senate Committee on Finance and the Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, and chaired the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, eventually becoming the longest-serving head of the committee in Senate history.
Boren was one of only two Democratic senators to vote in favor of the controversial nomination of Robert Bork to the Supreme Court in 1987. He also supported the nomination of Clarence Thomas to the high court—a decision he later regretted. Boren voted in 1990 against the Persian Gulf War, surprising many political observers.
Offered the presidency of the University of Oklahoma, Boren resigned from the Senate in 1994. Two years later, Reform Party presidential candidate Ross Perot tried to lure Boren back into politics by making him his running mate, but he declined.
Boren has sat on the board of directors of Texas Instruments, AMR Corporation (the parent company of American Airlines), Conoco-Phillips, Phillips Petroleum, and Torchmark.
He is the author of A Letter to America (2008), in which he puts great emphasis on the need to improve education in the United States
Boren has been married twice. His first wife, Janna Little, died. Boren then married Molly Shi. His son, Dan Boren, currently serves in the U.S. House of Representatives for Oklahoma’s 2nd congressional district. His daughter, Carrie, is a former actress and current director for evangelism in the Episcopal Diocese of Dallas.
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