For eighteen years from 1993 to 2011, Russell D. Feingold represented Wisconsin in the United States Senate. He served on the Judiciary, Foreign Relations, Budget, and Intelligence Committees. He also served in the Wisconsin State Senate from 1983 to 1993 and practiced law for six years at Foley & Lardner and LaFollette & Sinykin in Madison, Wisconsin.
Russ follows in the long progressive Wisconsin tradition of open government, fighting for families, and fiscal responsibility. Well known for leading the fight for campaign finance reform in the Senate alongside Senator John McCain, Russ has always championed efforts to limit the influence of special interests. Senator Feingold was also the only senator to vote against the Patriot Act, was the first senator to propose a timetable to exit Iraq, and believes we need a timetable to leave Afghanistan. In addition, Russ has always fought against unfair trade agreements like NAFTA and fought against financial deregulation.
Russ was the recipient of the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation’s Profile in Courage Award in 1999 and also received the Four Freedoms Award from the Roosevelt Institute in 2011.
In 1917, Feingold's family settled in Janesville, Wisconsin, where he was born to parents Leon and Sylvia on March 2, 1953. Feingold graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with honors in 1975, received an honors degree from Oxford University as a Rhodes Scholar in 1977, and then went on to Harvard Law School, where he earned his honors degree in 1979.
In 1982, in his first try for elective office, Feingold defeated a longtime incumbent and was elected to the Wisconsin State Senate for the 27th District. Feingold was reelected in 1986 and 1990. When Feingold first ran for the U.S. Senate in 1992, he won a tough three-way primary, and went on to defeat a two-term incumbent. Feingold was reelected to the Senate in 1998 and 2004.
Since leaving the Senate, Russ has been a visiting professor at Marquette University Law School and the inaugural Mimi and Peter Haas Distinguished Visitor at Stanford University during Spring quarter of 2012. He will return to Stanford to its Law School as a Lecturer in Law in early 2013.
Feingold founded Progressives United in 2011 to stand up to the exploding corporate influence we’ve seen in our political system since the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United.
Russ recently served as a co-chair for President Obama’s reelection campaign.
Russ is also the author of the New York Times bestseller While America Sleeps, about what America has done wrong both domestically and abroad since the terrorist attacks of September 11, and what steps must be taken to ensure that the next ten years are focused on the international problems that threaten America and its citizens.