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|Colorado Secretary of State|
January 14, 2009 – January 14, 2011
|Preceded by||Mike Coffman|
|Succeeded by||Scott Gessler|
|Born||July 11, 1949
Grand Junction, Colorado
|Spouse(s)||Mary Beth Buescher|
|Residence||Grand Junction, Colorado|
|Alma mater||University of Colorado|
Bernie Buescher is the former secretary of state of Colorado. A Democrat, he was appointed to the office in 2009 by Governor of Colorado Bill Ritter to fill the vacancy left by the resignation of Republican Mike Coffman. He was defeated in 2011.
Bernie Buescher is a fourth generation Coloradoan who was born and raised in Grand Junction and has lived there most of his life. After the untimely death of his father, when Bernie was 15 years old, Bernie’s mother, Vickey Buescher, worked hard to put her three children through college and her example taught them that through hard work they could achieve their goals. While at Grand Junction High School, Bernie was the co-editor of the school newspaper. After graduation, he went on to college at Notre Dame and graduated with an accounting degree which he used to help put himself through law school. While at Notre Dame, Bernie met his future wife, Mary Beth. They have been married for 37 years and they have four adult children, Michael, Elizabeth, Marcia, and Susan, and two grandchildren. Bernie and Mary Beth both received their law degrees from the University of Colorado in 1974.
After law school, Bernie and Mary Beth returned to Grand Junction where they raised their family. They became immersed in issues facing the community and together, Bernie and Mary Beth were named "Citizens of the Year" for 2004 by the Grand Junction Chamber of Commerce to honor their community involvement.
On January 14, 2009, Bernie was sworn in as Colorado’s Secretary of State. During the previous four years, Bernie served two terms in the Colorado House of Representatives. At the legislature, Bernie was appointed to the Joint Budget Committee, where he worked on behalf of Colorado to find solutions to the issues facing the state. Bernie served as Chair of the Budget Committee in 2006 and 2008, and as chair of the Appropriations Committee in 2007 and 2008.
Key legislative accomplishments include working on legislation to protect PERA, legislation promoting Colorado’s wineries and the use of renewable energy for Colorado, counseling for victims of child abuse, and legislation expanding the Low Income Energy Assistance Program. He also worked on legislation regarding the allocation of federal mineral lease revenues to aid in funding higher education and established a Rainy Day Fund for the state.
Prior to holding public office, Bernie was appointed by Governor Roy Romer to reorganize the Colorado State Fair. Governor Romer then tapped him to be the Executive Director of the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy and Finance, where he was responsible for implementing the Children's Basic Health Plan. For nearly ten years, he served as President of West Star Aviation.. Bernie practiced law as a member of Williams, Turner and Holmes, P.C. from 1975 through 1986.References