Nevada Senator Tapped to Lead NCSL

8/22/2014

NCSL NewsSenator Debbie Smith Will Serve as Group's 42nd President

Minneapolis– Senator Debbie Smith became the 42nd President of the National Conference of State Legislatures at the group’s annual Legislative Summit.

Smith, a Democrat, succeeds Republican Bruce Starr of the Oregon Senate. NCSL, a bipartisan organization that serves the nation’s 7,383 state lawmakers and more than 20,000 legislative staff throughout the country, alternates its leadership annually between the two parties.

“This organization has built such an impressive reputation over 40 years and I am honored to serve as president,” Smith said. “Having been involved with NCSL for many years, I know firsthand the important role NCSL plays in providing legislators just like myself with support, ideas and connections to help us lead in our own states. I appreciate the trust my peers from around the country have placed in me to lead this organization.”

Smith became the first Nevada legislator to serve as an officer on NCSL’s 60-member executive committee when she was elected vice president of the organization in 2012. Before that, Smith had been actively involved in NCSL for several years, including serving on NCSL’s Labor and Economic Development Committee.

“Issues like public education, transportation and health care are transcendent party lines and I look forward to this next year working together and seeking common sense solutions to many of the issues facing our states,” Smith said.

Smith was first elected to the Nevada Assembly in 2000, representing Nevada’s 30th district. In 2011 she was named speaker pro tempore of the Nevada Assembly. In 2012, she was elected to the Nevada Senate, representing the 13th district where she chairs the Finance Committee and serves as assistant majority leader.

Smith lives in Sparks, Nev., with her husband Greg. They have three children and two granddaughters.


NCSL is a bipartisan organization that serves the legislators and staffs of the states, commonwealths and territories. It provides research, technical assistance and opportunities for policymakers to exchange ideas on the most pressing state issues and is an effective and respected advocate for the interests of the states in the American federal system.