Senator Peter Knudson

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District 17

My district includes Grantsville, Tooele and Erda in Tooele County. Wellsville, Mendon, Nibley, Hyrum, Millville and Paradise in Cache County, plus all of Box Elder County from near my home in Brigham City to Utah's northwest border with Idaho and Nevada.

My roots run deep in Utah Pioneer heritage. My great grandfather on my father’s side immigrated to Utah in the mid 1800's from Denmark. He was among the first settlers in the Brigham City area. My mother's heritage includes eighteenth century family members who fought in the American Revolutionary War. Their descendants were among the early settlers of Box Elder County. Originally, my mother's progenitors came from Wales and Great Britain.

Political discussion was daily fodder in my home! My mother=s father was very active politically, having served as Chairman of the Utah Democratic party, and my father's family was deeply rooted in the Utah Republican party. My parents were both hard working people that ran a small restaurant business in Brigham City. They knew everyone in the area. Many great political debates were engaged at the soda fountain in the Idle Isle Café, my parent's restaurant. My involvement in politics and government was not something I had planned, but given my upbringing and background it was quite natural.

My wife, Georgie, and I met in our senior year at the University of Utah. She was engaged to someone else, and I was going steady. A few months after our initial meeting we were lined up by mutual friends and we began seeing each other; we had both terminated our previous relationships.

Georgie attended Stanford University after finishing at the University of Utah and I attended dental school at the College of Physicians and Surgeons in San Francisco. By the end of our first quarter we were engaged. We were married at the end of the school year in 1963. We have been blessed with four spectacular children and two precious grandchildren, and a third is soon to arrive.

My career as an Orthodontist has provided me with the opportunities and flexibility to work successfully in my chosen profession and to serve in elected government. In 1974 I began a four-year term as a member of the Brigham City Council. This was followed by serving three successive four-year terms as Mayor of Brigham City. After sixteen years in elected office I thought I had enough -- or I thought the citizens of Brigham City had had enough of me, so I didn't run for a fourth term as Mayor. I had been out of office for four years when I had a late night visit from my State Representative. He came to let me know he wasn't going to run for re-election and he thought I should run for his seat. I told him that my wife would not like that idea. He countered that he had already spoken with her and she was very supportive. With that, I was hooked!

I served two two-year terms in the Utah House of Representatives and have served two four-year terms in the Utah State Senate. Serving in the State Legislature has been a marvelous opportunity. Representing the citizens of my district in Box Elder, Cache and Tooele Counties is a public trust I honor and take seriously. During my tenure in the legislature I have been honored to serve two 2-year terms as the Assistant Majority Whip in the Senate and I am currently serving as the Senate Majority Leader.

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