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The Hon John Hickenlooper, Governor, State of Colorado, Denver

A geologist-turned brewpub pioneer who had never run for political office
(not even student council) before running for Denver Mayor in 2003, Governor John Hickenlooper of Colorado took office on Jan. 11, 2011.

Born in Narberth, Pa., John moved to Colorado in 1981, after earning a master’s in Geology at Wesleyan University, and found work with Buckhorn Petroleum. With the collapse of the oil industry in the 1980s, John was laid-off and his career as a geologist came to an end. John opened Colorado’s first brewpub, The Wynkoop Brewing Co. His vision proved successful, and his brewpub and restaurant are now mainstays of Denver’s community

In 2003, John was elected Mayor of Denver. In 2005, he introduced GreenPrint Denver, a plan to improve Denver’s urban environment by increasing efficiency and decreasing greenhouse gas emissions, promoting green urban design, and implementing an aggressive waste reduction campaign. Also in 2005, Time magazine placed him among the top five “big-city” mayors in the country. In 2008, John brought a new level of attention to the Mile High City, successfully marketing Denver as an ideal place to host the 2008 Democratic National Convention.

In 2010, John ran for Governor of Colorado on a platform to make Colorado the best place for entrepreneurs to grow jobs. He promised a balanced budget plan without raising taxes and a regulatory philosophy that would support economic development while maintaining the highest environmental standards. John and his wife, Helen Thorpe, have one son. They live in Denver.

Natural Gas Vehicles:
Governor Hicklooper and 12 other governors have sent a letter to the chief executives of 19 automotive companies urging them to develop and manufacture vehicles that run on natural gas. He and Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin have signed a multi-state agreement to increase natural gas vehicles in their fleets.

Natural Gas and the Environment:
Governor Hickenlooper is praising a proposal by the Obama Administration that would require oil and gas companies drilling on federal lands to disclose the chemicals they use in hydraulic fracturing. The US Department of Interior issued its draft rule May 4. Similar regulation is already in effect in Colorado.

“Our set of rules will almost exactly mimic the federal rules, which is the way it should be,” Hickenlooper said during a recent radio interview.