Greg Walden

Greg Walden
Chair of the House Energy Committee
Taking office
January 3, 2017
Succeeding Fred Upton
Chair of the National Republican Congressional Committee
Assumed office
January 3, 2013
Leader John Boehner
Paul Ryan
Preceded by Pete Sessions
Succeeded by Steve Stivers (Designate)
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Oregon's 2nd district
Assumed office
January 3, 1999
Preceded by Bob Smith
Member of the Oregon Senate
from the 28th district
In office
January 1995  January 1997
Preceded by Wes Cooley
Succeeded by Ted Ferrioli
Member of the Oregon House of Representatives
from the 56th district
In office
January 1989  January 1995
Preceded by Wayne Fawbush
Succeeded by Bob Montgomery
Personal details
Born Gregory Paul Walden
(1957-01-10) January 10, 1957
The Dalles, Oregon, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Mylene
Children 1 son
Alma mater University of Oregon (BS)

Gregory Paul Walden (born January 10, 1957) is an American politician, the U.S. Representative for Oregon's 2nd congressional district, first elected to that office in 1998. He is a member of the Republican Party, as of 2016 the only Republican member of the congressional delegation from Oregon. The 2nd district covers more than two-thirds of the state (generally, east of the Cascades). He is the son of Paul E. Walden, three-term Oregon state representative.[1]

Early life, education and career

Walden was born in The Dalles, Oregon, the son of Elizabeth (née McEwen) and Paul Ernest Walden.[2] He earned a Bachelor of Science degree at the University of Oregon in 1981.[3] Before being elected to Congress, Walden owned and ran radio stations.

Political career

Walden served as Press Secretary and Chief of Staff to Congressman Denny Smith from 1981 to 1987. He was elected to the Oregon House of Representatives in 1988 and served in the House until 1995, when he was appointed to the Oregon State Senate to fill a vacancy that opened up when Wes Cooley was elected to the U. S. House. Walden rose to the position of assistant majority leader in the Senate and was considering a bid for Oregon Governor in 1994. However, upon discovering that the son he and his wife were expecting had a heart defect, Walden decided to not run for Governor and to not seek re-election to the state Senate. Their son died soon after birth.[4]

After Cooley was caught in several lies about his military service, Walden announced he was running for the 2nd District seat as an independent. However, he served as Oregon state chairman of Bob Dole's presidential campaign, and he touted his "strong Republican credentials"--implying that he would serve as a Republican if elected. Walden's candidacy led to fears that the Democrats could take advantage of a split in the Republican vote and take a seat they hadn't held since 1981.[5] This ended, however, when Cooley's predecessor, Bob Smith, was called out of retirement.[6]

Smith didn't run for reelection in 1998. Walden easily won the Republican primary and breezed to election in November. He has been reelected five times. Though his district contains some liberal-leaning communities such as Ashland, most of the district leans heavily Republican, and Walden has always been reelected easily. In 2002, he defeated Democrat Peter Buckley, who later became a member of the Oregon House of Representatives. In 2006, Walden defeated Democratic candidate Carol Voisin, and in 2008 he won a sixth term with 70% of the vote over Democrat Noah Lemas and Pacific Green Tristin Mock. Following the defeat of Senator Gordon Smith in the 2008 elections, Walden became the only Republican to represent Oregon in the United States Congress.

U.S. House of Representatives

Party leadership

Walden was chosen by Speaker John Boehner to be chairman of the House Majority Transition Committee. He served as chairman of the House Republican Leadership through most of 2010.[7]

Following the 2012 Elections, Walden became chair of the National Republican Congressional Committee. In July 2014, he announced he would seek a second term as chairman of the committee, arguing he would help provide continuity in a changing leadership team after the defeat of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor. [8]

Committee assignments

From 2010 to 2011, Walden gave up his seat on the Committee on Energy and Commerce, at Republican leadership request so that Parker Griffith, who had recently switched parties, could take his spot on that committee.[9]

Walden founded the Small Brewers Caucus (see Alcohol in Oregon) and the Digital Television Caucus; as of 2007, he was a member of 39 congressional caucuses.[10]

Oregon Congressmen Earl Blumenauer (left) and Walden, hiking on Mount Hood during a 2005 fact-finding trip.[11]

Walden is also a member of the centrist Republican Main Street Partnership and the Congressional Cement Caucus.

Legislation sponsored

The following is an incomplete list of legislation that Walden introduced into the House of Representatives.

Personal life

Walden and his wife, Mylene, live in Hood River with their son Anthony. They are members of the Episcopal Church in the United States of America and participate in local civic groups such as the Rotary Club and the Chamber of Commerce.

Walden is a licensed amateur (ham) radio operator, W7EQI.[19]

On October 20, 2009, it was reported that Walden was the first Member of Congress to contract the H1N1-A (Swine Flu) Virus.[20]

Business interests

On January 31, 2007, Walden sold Columbia Gorge Broadcasting, which runs five stations in the eastern Columbia River Gorge, to Bicoastal Columbia River LLC in order to avoid any conflict of interest that might arise with his congressional duties.[21]

Electoral history

Greg Walden General Electoral Results 1998–2014 [22]
Year Democrat Votes Pct Republican Votes Pct Libertarian Votes Pct Socialist Votes Pct Constitution Votes Pct Pacific Green Votes Pct
2014 Aelea Christofferson 73,785 25.67% Greg Walden 202,374 70.41% Sharon Durbin 10,491 3.65% No candidate No candidate No candidate
2012 Joyce B. Segers 96,741 29.16% Greg Walden 228,043 68.73% Joe Tabor 7,025 2.12% No candidate No candidate No candidate
2010 Joyce B. Segers 72,173 25.86% Greg Walden 206,245 73.91% No candidate No candidate No candidate No candidate
2008 Noah Lemas 87,649 25.75% Greg Walden 236,560 69.49% No candidate No candidate Richard D. Hake 5,817 1.70% Tristin Mock 9,668 2.84%
2006 Carol Voisin 82,484 30.35% Greg Walden 181,529 66.80% No candidate No candidate Jack Allen Brown Jr. 7,193 2.64% No candidate
2004 John C. McColgan 88,914 25.63% Greg Walden 248,461 71.64% Jim Lindsay 4,792 1.38% No candidate Jack Allen Brown Jr. 4,060 1.17% No candidate
2002 Peter Buckley 64,991 25.76% Greg Walden 181,295 71.86% Mike Wood 5,681 2.25% No candidate No candidate No candidate
2000 Walter Ponsford 78,101 26.12% Greg Walden 220,086 73.63% No candidate No candidate No candidate No candidate
1998 Kevin M. Campbell 74,924 34.81% Greg Walden 132,316 61.48% Lindsey Bradshaw 4,729 2.19% Rohn Webb 2,773 1.28% No candidate No candidate


  1. "Oregon Legislative Assembly (56th) 1971 Regular Session". Oregon State Archives (official website). Oregon Secretary of State. 2006. Retrieved 2006-12-08.
  3. "Guide to the New Congress" (PDF). CQ Roll Call. 2010-11-04. Retrieved 2010-11-24.
  4. Wong, Peter (April 26, 1998). "Profile: Walden hopes to snag May 19 GOP primary win". Mail Tribune. Retrieved August 25, 2011.
  5. Toner, Robin (July 18, 1996). "Political briefing: the states and the issues". New York Times. Retrieved June 1, 2010.
  6. "The 1996 elections: The states: West". New York Times. November 7, 1996. Retrieved June 1, 2010.
  7. Meet the GOP transition leader: Greg Walden,, November 8, 2010
  8. Livingston, Abby. "Greg Walden to Seek Second Term Running NRCC (Updated)". Roll Call. Retrieved 30 July 2014.
  9. "Walden Rises Up From Obscurity". Roll Call. National Republican Congressional Committee. March 8, 2010. Retrieved 2010-04-09.
  10. Chu, Keith (2007-07-10). "Another day, another caucus". Bend Bulletin. |section= ignored (help)
  11. "Walden, Blumenauer Statement on Mt. Hood Trek". 19 August 2005. Retrieved 2010-04-09.
  12. "H.R. 2640 – Summary". United States Congress. Retrieved 30 October 2013.
  13. "CBO – H.R. 2640". Congressional Budget Office. Retrieved 30 October 2013.
  14. "H.R. 3675 – CBO". Congressional Budget Office. Retrieved 10 March 2014.
  15. 1 2 3 4 Kasperowicz, Pete (11 March 2014). "House votes for more transparency at the FCC". The Hill. Retrieved 12 March 2014.
  16. Nedd, Michael D (26 February 2014). "H.R. 3366: Hermiston Agricultural Research and Extension Center". United States Department of the Interior. Retrieved 29 May 2014.
  17. Clevenger, Andrew (29 May 2014). "House passes Hermiston legislation". The Bulletin. Retrieved 29 May 2014.
  18. "H.R. 4572 – Summary". United States Congress. Retrieved 22 July 2014.
  19. "Rep. Greg Walden, OR (R) used Morse code to announce chairmanship".
  20. First lawmaker diagnosed with 'likely' swine flu, an October 20, 2009 blog post from The Hill's Blog Briefing Room
  21. "U.S. Rep. Walden sells radio stations in Columbia Gorge". Associated Press. February 1, 2007. Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-02-26.
  22. Retrieved 5/21/2010
United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Bob Smith
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Oregon's 2nd congressional district

Preceded by
Fred Upton
Chair of the House Energy Committee

Taking office 2017
Party political offices
Preceded by
Pete Sessions
Chair of the National Republican Congressional Committee
Succeeded by
Steve Stivers
United States order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded by
Mike Thompson
United States Representatives by seniority
Succeeded by
William Lacy Clay
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