57 Facts About Bill Richardson


Bill Richardson was the U S Ambassador to the United Nations and Energy Secretary in the Clinton administration, a U S Congressman, chairman of the 2004 Democratic National Convention, and chairman of the Democratic Governors Association.

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In December 2008, Bill Richardson was nominated for the cabinet-level position of Secretary of Commerce in the first Obama administration but withdrew a month later, as he was being investigated for possible improper business dealings in New Mexico.

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Bill Richardson has occasionally provided advice on diplomatic issues pertaining to North Korea and has visited the nation on several occasions, including efforts to release American detainees.

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Bill Richardson has completed a number of private humanitarian missions, one of which secured the release of U S journalist Danny Fenster from a Myanmar prison in November 2021.

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Bill Richardson's mother, Maria Luisa Lopez-Collada Marquez, had been his father's secretary — she was the Mexican-born daughter of a Mexican mother and a Spanish father from Villaviciosa, Asturias.

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Bill Richardson's father was born on a ship heading towards Nicaragua.

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Bill Richardson, a United States citizen by birth, spent his childhood in a lavish hacienda in Coyoacan's barrio of San Francisco where he was raised as a Roman Catholic.

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When Richardson was 13, his parents sent him to the U S to attend Middlesex School, a preparatory school in Concord, Massachusetts, where he played baseball as a pitcher.

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Bill Richardson entered Tufts University in 1966, where he continued to play baseball.

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Bill Richardson acknowledged the error, which he claimed was unintentional, saying he had been scouted by several teams and told that he "would or could" be drafted, but he was mistaken in saying that he actually had been drafted.

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Bill Richardson earned a Bachelor's degree at Tufts University in 1970, majoring in French and political science, and was a member and president of Delta Tau Delta fraternity.

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Bill Richardson earned a master's degree in international affairs from the Tufts University Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy in 1971.

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Bill Richardson had met his future wife Barbara when they were in high school in Concord, Massachusetts, and they married in 1972 following her graduation from Wheaton College.

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Bill Richardson was later a staff member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

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Bill Richardson worked on congressional relations for the Henry Kissinger State Department during the Nixon administration.

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In 1978, Bill Richardson moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico, and ran for the House of Representatives in 1980 as a Democrat, losing narrowly to longtime 1st District representative and future United States Secretary of the Interior Manuel Lujan .

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Two years later, Bill Richardson was elected to New Mexico's newly created third district, taking in most of the northern part of the state.

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Bill Richardson served as Chairman of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus in the 98th Congress and as Chairman of the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Native American Affairs in the 103rd Congress .

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Bill Richardson became a member of the Democratic leadership as a deputy majority whip, where he became friends with Bill Clinton after they worked closely on several issues, including when he served as the ranking House Democrat in favor of NAFTA's passage in 1993.

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Bill Richardson was criticized by the Senate for his handling of the espionage inquiry, which involved missing computer hard drives containing sensitive data, and for not testifying in front of Congress sooner.

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Bill Richardson justified his response by saying that he was waiting to uncover more information before speaking to Congress.

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Bill Richardson tightened security following the scandal, leading to the creation of the National Nuclear Security Administration .

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Bill Richardson became the first Energy Secretary to implement a plan to dispose of nuclear waste.

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Bill Richardson directed the overhaul of the department's consultation policy with Native American tribes and established the Tribal Energy Program.

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Bill Richardson was an adjunct professor at Harvard Kennedy School and a lecturer at the Armand Hammer United World College of the American West.

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In 2000, Bill Richardson was awarded a United States Institute of Peace Senior Fellowship.

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Bill Richardson spent the next year researching and writing on the negotiations with North Korea and the energy dimensions of U S relations.

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In 2011, Bill Richardson was named a senior fellow at the Baker Institute of Rice University.

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Bill Richardson joined Kissinger McLarty Associates, a "strategic advisory firm" headed by former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger and former Clinton White House chief of staff Mack McLarty, as Senior Managing Director.

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Bill Richardson withdrew from these boards after being nominated by the Democratic Party for governor of New Mexico, but retained considerable stock holdings in Valero and Diamond Offshore.

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Bill Richardson is on the board of directors of the National Institute for Civil Discourse, which was created after the 2011 Tucson shooting that left six dead and 13 wounded, including Congresswoman Gabby Giffords.

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Bill Richardson took office in January 2003 as the only Hispanic Governor in the United States.

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In 2003, Bill Richardson backed and signed legislation creating a permit system for New Mexicans to carry concealed handguns.

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Bill Richardson applied for and received a concealed weapons permit, though by his own admission he seldom carries a gun.

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Bill Richardson was named Chairman of the Democratic Governors Association in 2004 and announced a desire to increase the role of Democratic governors in deciding the future of their party.

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In December 2005, Richardson announced the intention of New Mexico to collaborate with billionaire Richard Branson to bring space tourism to the proposed Spaceport America located near Las Cruces, New Mexico.

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In March 2006, Richardson vetoed legislation that would ban the use of eminent domain to transfer property to private developers, as allowed by the Supreme Court's 2005 decision in Kelo v City of New London.

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Bill Richardson promised to work with the legislature to draft new legislation addressing the issue in the 2007 legislative session.

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Bill Richardson received the highest percentage of votes in any gubernatorial election in the state's history.

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In December 2006, Bill Richardson announced that he would support a ban on cockfighting in New Mexico.

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Bill Richardson was honored with the 2009 Human Rights Award by Death Penalty Focus.

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The group accused Bill Richardson of allowing political allies to benefit from firms connected to state investments, rewarding close associates with state positions or benefits, and allowing pay-to-play activity in his administration.

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In December 2010, while still serving as governor, Bill Richardson returned to North Korea in an unofficial capacity at the invitation of the North's chief nuclear negotiator Kim Kye-gwan.

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Bill Richardson was being considered for the position of Commerce Secretary.

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Bill Richardson did so, and later offered her a position which she declined.

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The American Spectator alleged that Bill Richardson knew more about the Clinton–Lewinsky scandal than he declared to the grand jury.

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In 2011, Bill Richardson was under investigation for his role in alleged campaign finance violations.

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In 2019 it was revealed that Bill Richardson was among those named in court documents from a civil suit between Virginia Roberts Giuffre and Jeffrey Epstein associate Ghislaine Maxwell.

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Bill Richardson has visited North Korea a number of times, and has been involved in negotiations with the leadership there since the early 1990s.

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Bill Richardson formed a foundation, the Bill Richardson Center, to help negotiate the release of political prisoners globally.

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Bill Richardson tried unsuccessfully to speak to North Korean officials about the detention of Kenneth Bae, a U S citizen accused of committing "hostile" acts against the state, and sought to visit him, but was only able to deliver to authorities a letter from Bae's son.

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In March 2016, at the request of Ohio Governor John Kasich, Bill Richardson attempted to negotiate for the release of Cincinnati college student Otto Warmbier, who had been detained on a visit to North Korea.

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In November 2021 Richardson undertook a mission to Myanmar, where he negotiated with military junta head Min Aung Hlaing, and secured the release of U S journalist Danny Fenster from an 11-year prison sentence.

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In 2011, Bill Richardson joined the boards of APCO Worldwide company Global Political Strategies as chairman, the World Resources Institute, the National Council for Science and the Environment, and Abengoa .

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In 2012, Bill Richardson joined the advisory board of Grow Energy and Refugees International.

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In December 2012, Bill Richardson became chairman of the Board of Directors of Car Charging Group, the largest independent owner and operator of public electric vehicle charging stations in the United States.

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In 2013 Bill Richardson joined the Board of Advisors for the Fuel Freedom Foundation.

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