For more than 30 years, Bill Richardson has led a distinguished public-service career as a U.S. Congressman (1982-1996), U. S. Ambassador to the United Nations (1997-1998), Secretary of Energy under President Bill Clinton (1998-2000), and Governor of New Mexico (2003-2011).
In 2008, he sought the Democratic nomination for President, dropping out after Iowa and New Hampshire. As a diplomat and Special Envoy, Richardson has received four Nobel Peace Prize nominations, and has successfully won the release of hostages and American servicemen in North Korea, Cuba, Iraq, and Sudan. He has authored three books including How to Sweet-Talk a Shark: Strategies and Stories from a Master Negotiator. He is active on the national and international speech circuit, and appears frequently on numerous television news programs, including CNN, FOX, Univision, Meet the Press, and This Week with George Stephanopoulos.
Before being elected Governor of New Mexico, Richardson was Chairman of Freedom House, a private nonpartisan organization that promotes democracy and human rights worldwide, and served on the boards of the National Resource Defense Council and United Way International. He was also given the National Hispanic Hero Award by the U.S. Hispanic Leadership Institute. Richardson has started two foundations: The Richardson Center for Global Engagement, focusing on conflict resolution and prisoner release, and the Foundation to Preserve New Mexico Wildlife with actor and conservationist Robert Redford, which has led the charge to protect wild horses and provide alternatives to horse slaughter. Recently, the Richardson Center for Global Engagement played an instrumental role in the successful release of Marine Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi from prison in Tijuana, Mexico.
Richardson spoke at The Common Good as part of the 2008 Democratic National Convention Panel.