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Sen. Byron L. Dorgan, Published January 02 2011

It’s been a great honor serving the people of ND

You might imagine that “cleaning out my desk” after serving 30 years in Congress has brought back a treasury of wonderful memories for me.

On Monday, I will end my service in the U.S. Senate. As I’ve been going through the papers, records and photographs accumulated over three decades, I’m reminded again of what an extraordinary privilege has been given to me by the people of North Dakota.

I want to say a special thank-you to all North Dakotans for the opportunity to serve our state and country.

It was a year ago when I decided not to seek re-election to another six-year term in the Senate. I have served continuously in statewide elected office since age 26. It has been a long and rewarding career. But I decided this was the right time for me to move on to another chapter in my life.

I have expressed my best wishes to both John Hoeven and Rick Berg, who will now begin their service in Congress. I know they will continue the tradition of working hard for our state.

Finally, a special thank-you to two great friends and wonderful colleagues, Sen. Kent Conrad and Congressman Earl Pomeroy. Both are outstanding public servants and have worked tirelessly for the best interests of our state and country.

As for me, I will continue to work for the public good in other ways in the years ahead.

George Bernard Shaw said, “Life is no brief candle for me. It is a brilliant torch that I am able to hold for a moment.”

These three decades have been my moment, and for that I am forever grateful to the people of North Dakota.

Dorgan, D-N.D., is retiring

from the Senate.