FAMILY MATTERS. Valerie Henry is resigning her post as legislative assistant for Rep. Greg Walden, R-Ore., to become "full-time CEO" of a household with two young children. Born and raised in Alexandria, Va., Henry graduated from Virginia Tech in 1997 and began her career as an intern for former Sen. John Warner, R-Va., before being promoted to a permanent position on his staff. It was there she met her future husband, Patrick Henry, a member of Warner's committee staff who is now a special agent in the Secret Service. After stints on K Street and in the office of Sen. Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, Henry assumed her post with Walden in 2004. Only a year later she received an award from the National Rural Health Association for her work to improve health care for rural Americans. On Friday, Walden praised Henry's "infectious personality" in a floor statement. "I know the staff will miss the camaraderie that Valerie brought to the office every single day," Walden said.
NO MORE GORE. The longtime chief of staff for Sen. Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., is leaving Capitol Hill. Elizabeth Gore had been with Dorgan for just under a decade, joining his office in late 2000 as legislative director and deputy chief of staff. Gore had previously served as special assistant for legislation in the OMB, and was legislative director for Rep. Chet Edwards, D-Texas, from 1993 to 1998. The graduate of Swarthmore College arrived in Washington as a junior economist with the House Budget Committee. Last week, Dorgan paid tribute to his outgoing chief of staff on the Senate floor: "She is smart, tough, honest, and has demonstrated an uncanny sense of good judgment," he said.
DIESEL POWER. Veteran congressional spokesman Steve Hansen is the new manager of media relations for the Diesel Technology Forum, a nonprofit that promotes clean diesel technologies. Hansen was most recently director of media relations for the Intelligent Transportation Society of America, which focuses on emerging technologies in surface transportation. Hansen has over two decades of experience on Capitol Hill, serving as spokesman for the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee from 2001-07 and the House Natural Resources Committee from both 1995-2001 and from 2007-09. The Alaska native attended Linfield College in McMinnville, Ore., and reported for the Anchorage Times from 1978 to 1983. He later served as press secretary for a former speaker in the Alaska Legislature, Joe Hayes, before joining the staff of former Sen. Frank Murkowski, R-Alaska, in 1985. From 1988 to 1995, Hansen was press secretary for Rep. Don Young, R-Alaska.
This article appears in the Aug. 7, 2010, edition of National Journal Daily.