Nevada lawmaker to head national group

CARSON CITY - Nevada State Sen. Debbie Smith,D-Sparks has been named president of the National Conference of State Legislatures during the organization’s annual legislative summit.

Smith will serve as 42nd president of the NCSL, succeeding Oregon state Sen. Bruce Starr,R-Hillsboro, who held the position since August 2013. Smith became the first Nevada legislator to serve as an officer on NCSL’s 60 member executive committee when she was elected vice president of the organization in 2012. In that same year she was elected to the Nevada State Senate.

“Issues like public education, transportation and health care are transcendent across party lines, and I look forward this next year of working together and seeking common sense solutions to many of the issues facing our states,” Smith said in a press release.

The National Conference of State Legislatures is a bipartisan organization established in 1975 for members and staff of state legislatures in the U.S. According to it’s mission statement, its goal is to “improve the the quality and effectiveness of state legislatures; promote policy innovation and communication among state legislatures; and to ensure state legislatures a strong, cohesive voice in the federal system.”

Contact Capital Bureau reporter Whip Villarreal at or 775-687-3901. Find him on Twitter: @WhipVillarreal.