James V. Hansen, Utah’s longest-serving representative, has died.
Congressman Hansen was in office for 22 years from 1981 to 2003. He served as Speaker of the House from 1979 until 1980 and was elected to Congress in 1980 where he represented Utah’s 1st Congressional District.
“Utah has lost a true statesman,” Senator Orrin Hatch said, “Whether it was in the Navy, in the state legislature, or in the halls of Congress, Jim served with honor and distinction, always putting principle before party and others before self,” the senator added.
Hatch is Utah’s longest-serving, he’s been in office since 1977.
“Utah would not be what it is today without Congressman Jim Hansen,” he said. “I’m grateful to have known such a remarkable man and even more grateful to have called him a friend.”
Governor Gary Herbert said Congressman Hansen was drawn into public service for all of the right reasons:
“As a private citizen, he was unhappy with the water system in his hometown of Farmington, Utah, and wanted to improve it. His rule for getting involved in politics was ‘get involved because you have a cause, not because you want a job.’ His cause to fix the city’s water system led to a storied career in public service that included time in the Utah State Legislature and the U.S. Congress. He will be missed. We need more public servants like Jim Hansen.”
Representative Rob. Bishop replaced Hansen’s seat in Utah 1st Congressional District.
“He was a trailblazer. Not just for Utah, but for me personally. I followed him into the state legislature, to the Speakership, as Chairman of the Western States Caucus, into the U.S. House, and finally as Chairman of the Resources Committee,” Rep. Bishop stated. “I will be forever grateful for the time he took to mentor me in each and every one of these roles. His impact on my life, and many others cannot be overstated.”
Hansen was 86 years old.