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Commencement Speaker

3/24/05—Boston College Law School is pleased to announce that United States Senator Judd Gregg from New Hampshire has accepted the School’s invitation to speak at the 2005 Law School Commencement.

We’re delighted to have Senator Gregg address our graduates,” said BC Law Dean John H. Garvey. “He has been a wonderful friend to Boston College. He has also had a long and distinguished political career. He is currently chairman of the influential Senate Budget Committee, and before entering politics practiced law in New Hampshire. He will certainly bring an important perspective on the law to our graduating class on one of the most significant days in their lives.”

In November 2004, U.S. Senator Judd Gregg was re-elected to a third term in the United States Senate, receiving the highest number of votes in any election in New Hampshire history.

The 109th Congress provides Senator Gregg a number of key leadership and committee positions that give him an influential voice in national affairs, including serving as both the Chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, and as Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security. Following his tenure as Chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, Senator Gregg remains a senior member of the Senate HELP Committee. He will also retain his position on the Senate Appropriations Committee with seats on the Commerce, Justice and Science, Interior, Defense, Labor-Health-Education, and State and Foreign Operations subcommittees. On these committees, Senator Gregg impacts the national debate on such vital issues as overseeing the federal budget, homeland security and national defense, education, international affairs, law enforcement, Social Security, and health care.

Senator Gregg’s second term accomplishments include working to secure our homeland and defend our nation against terrorism locally and nationally; promoting responsible federal spending; increasing America’s energy independence; supporting policies that promote strong economic growth in New Hampshire and the nation; and protecting New Hampshire’s environment. As the former Chairman of the Senate HELP Committee, Senator Gregg led efforts to author and pass the No Child Left Behind law, which focuses public education on making sure children are learning. Groundbreaking bioterrorism legislation; the reauthorization of our nation’s special education law; initiatives to increase access to generic drugs; and providing health care to more Americans also passed under his leadership.

As the Chairman of the Senate Budget Committee in the 109th Congress, Senator Gregg’s third term agenda will include a continuation of his work to create and pass a responsible and prudent federal budget so that our nation continues to protect our borders and miliary personnel while controlling federal spending. Senator Gregg will work with other leaders in Congress to aggressively reduce the size of our federal budget deficit while addressing the rate of growth of entitlements. In addition to these responsibilities, and knowing that millions of Americans rely on Social Security, Senator Gregg remains deeply involved in efforts to save the program. He previously served as Bipartisan Co-Chair of the National Commission on Retirement Policy, Co-Chair of the Senate Republican Task Force on Social Security, and Chairman of the Senate Budget Committee Task Force on Social Security. In past Congresses, he introduced a landmark bipartisan proposal to save Social Security for the next 100 years without raising taxes and moved us closer to solving this core public policy problem.

As the Chairman of the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee, Senator Gregg continues the work he began while serving as Chairman of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice and Science. Senator Gregg has helped to ensure that state and local jurisdictions have the ability to detect, prevent, and respond to terrorism involving weapons of mass destruction. He has also focused on providing up-to-date technology and resources to local law enforcement officials to ensure the safety of communities throughout the country. While previously overseeing the Commerce Department, and particularly the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, he has promoted a careful balance between environmental and commercial concerns to preserve the almost limitless yield from our most important renewable resource, the oceans. Senator Gregg has also secured federal funds through the NOAA for innovative scientific and environmental research initiatives, including: the Mount Washington Observatory Weather Discovery Center; the University of New Hampshire Aquaculture program; the UNH Hydrographic Center; the Cooperative Institute for Coastal and Estuarine Environmental Technology; and the Seacoast Science Center Interpretive Exhibits in marine biology and aquaculture.

As former Chairman of the Senate Education Committee, Senator Gregg fought to focus our nation’s education system on making sure children are learning at appropriate grade levels, and to give parents a tangible way to measure their children’s progress. As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Senator Gregg has played a lead role in providing historic levels of federal funding for public education. From Fiscal Year 2001 to Fiscal Year 2004, Senator Gregg was instrumental in pushing for a significant 32% increase in federal funding for New Hampshire, from $18.4 billion to $24.2 billion. Senator Gregg continues to be a leader in working for significant increases in special education funding as well as substantial changes to the program’s often burdensome rules and regulations. Congress recently passed a measure, shepherded through the Senate by Senator Gregg, that will reduce the bureaucracy and paperwork faced by special education teachers; improve parental involvement; improve discipline; and increase accountability. In the area of special education funding, Senator Gregg has worked with President Bush and leaders in Congress to commit more to IDEA in four years with the current administration than all eight years under the Clinton administration. Federal funding for special education in New Hampshire has grown from $27 million in Fiscal Year 2001 to $42 million in Fiscal Year 2004, an increase of 53% or $15 million.

Senator Gregg continues to strongly support New Hampshire’s higher education community. He has worked with many New Hampshire educational institutions to develop and further programs that have made these schools stand out as leaders. In addition, Senator Gregg has returned over $400 million to New Hampshire colleges and universities, including the University of New Hampshire, Plymouth State College, Southern New Hampshire University, Dartmouth College, Franklin Pierce College, Saint Anselm College, and others. In Fiscal Year 2005, Senator Gregg secured over $65 million to support a number of initiatives by New Hampshire’s higher education community.

Senator Gregg’s numerous conservation efforts include preserving and protecting many environmentally-sensitive areas, including: the Connecticut Lakes Headwaters land formerly owned by International Paper; Lake Umbagog; the Great Bay Estuarine Research Reserve; Trout Pond; 13 Mile Woods; and conservation lands surrounding Lake Tarleton. Other key environmental initiatives include, co-authoring a bill to designate segments of the Lamprey River as part of the federal Wild and Scenic Rivers System; allocating funds to New Hampshire from the Land and Water Conservation Fund; and securing funds to add the Pondicherry Wildlife Preserve to the Silvio Conte National Wildlife Refuge.
In recognition of Senator Gregg’s outstanding record on the environment, many environmental leaders have applauded his efforts, including the NH Timberland Owners Association, the Trust for Public Lands, the Nature Conservancy, the Society for the Protection of NH Forests, the NH Audubon Society, the Great Bay Resource Protection Partnership, the Lamprey River Advisory Committee and the Southern NH Resource Conservation and Development District. The NH Sierra Club has honored Senator Gregg by naming him as a Champion of Clean Air.

Senator Gregg has brought millions of dollars to the Granite State for law enforcement initiatives, including a trunked radio system and advanced communications upgrades to significantly enhance information and communications systems available to law enforcement personnel across the state, initiatives to reduce gang-related crime along the Massachusetts border, and programs to improve the ability of North Country fire and rescue personnel to fulfill training requirements in a less-expensive and time-consuming manner.

Judd Gregg has the unique honor of being the first elected official in New Hampshire history to serve the state in each of the following capacities: three terms as United States Senator, 1993- Present; two terms as Governor of New Hampshire, 1989-1993; four terms as United States Representative for New Hampshire’s Second Congressional District, 1981-1989; and one term as Executive Councilor for New Hampshire’s District 5, 1979-1981.

A New Hampshire native, Senator Gregg was born in Nashua on February 14, 1947. He was educated in Nashua public schools, Phillips Exeter Academy (1965), and Columbia University (A.B., 1969). He received his J.D. in 1972 from Boston University Law School and his L.L.M. in tax law in 1975. Upon graduating from law school, he returned to Nashua and became a partner in the law firm of Sullivan, Gregg and Horton. He is married to Kathleen MacLellan Gregg. They have two daughters, Molly and Sarah, and a son, Joshua. Senator and Mrs. Gregg are residents of Rye, New Hampshire.