The 2015-2016 edition of the Tennessee Blue Book will be dedicated to the late U.S. Sen. Howard H. Baker, Jr. of Scott County.
Baker's lengthy and storied career spanned seven decades, including winning 56 percent of the popular vote in 1966 to become Tennessee’s first Republican U.S. senator since Reconstruction. He rose to national prominence during the Watergate hearings as vice chairman of the Senate Watergate Committee, when he uttered that famous question, “What did the president know, and when did he know it?”
After a brief bid for the 1980 Republican presidential nomination, he served as senate majority leader and helped pass President Ronald Reagan’s first-term tax cuts. He later served as President Reagan's chief of staff (1987-1988) as well as becoming the U.S. ambassador to Japan during President George W. Bush's administration.
After retirement, Baker devoted much of his time to the Howard H. Baker, Jr. Center for Public Policy at the University of Tennessee and once said that he would be remembered longest for his key role in the creation of the 125,000-acre Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area, which spans over land in both Tennessee and Kentucky.
"Senator Baker set the highest of standards for excellence in public service to our great state and nation. He did this by showing respect for others, demonstrating a high regard for collaboration and civil discourse, and, most of all, by the love he exemplified for his fellow Tennesseans, all of which were hallmarks of his great life," said Secretary of State Tre Hargett.
The Tennessee Blue Book, which is published every two years, is the definitive manual on Tennessee state government with detailed information about all three branches of government, Tennessee history, election statistics and more. The Blue Book, published by the Secretary of State's office, is available free of charge to Tennessee residents.
The 2015-2016 edition will be released in early 2016.