Magazine News Blogger

Fall 2012

The Current Lion of the U.S. Senate Is a Utah State Grad

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid Recalls His Mentor Leonard Arrington

Did you know that Senator Harry Reid graduated from Utah State? Senator Reid is serving his fifth term in the U.S. Senate and has been the Senate Majority Leader for nearly six years, since January 2007.

In fact, he double-majored at Utah State in political science and history, and his minor in economics led to his job as a teaching assistant to Professor Leonard Arrington. His fellow teaching assistant was Merlin Olsen.

Senator Reid recently told the Utah Statesman’s Catherine Bennett, “My all-time favorite teacher—and we remained friends until he died—his name was Leonard Arrington, and he was a great, very wonderful teacher. He taught in the economics department, and I had a minor in it, so I graded tests for him.”
Professor Arrington’s children, James, Carl, and Susan, remember fondly that Senator Reid visited their father on several occasions when Professor Arrington lived in Salt Lake City.

“Senator Reid made it a point to keep in touch with my father,” Susan Arrington Madsen said, “and he was so respectful and eager to learn. Our family could tell that dad really enjoyed the ongoing friendship he had with Harry Reid.”