Fall 2013

[Alumni News]

Tim Charters

Helping Plot Our Energy Future

Tim Charters

During the 2012 presidential election, Tim Charters (’93, Political Science) had a chance to work with the Romney campaign. The presidential hopeful was preparing for a town hall style debate against President Barack Obama and Charters got the chance to work as an advisor on energy policy.

“I wrote a few free-flowing lines for him, which he ended up using,” recalls Charters, who is policy director for the House Committee on Natural Resources and Republican staff director for the Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources. “It was very cool to see my work immediately influence the national debate.”

Charters’ political career began at HSU, where he was a member of the Campus Republicans. “We used to joke that we could meet in a phone booth,” he recalls. “We might have been lonely, but we were a committed bunch.”
In 1990, Charters volunteered for the congressional campaign of Frank Riggs. The Republican insurgent narrowly defeated Democratic incumbent Doug Bosco in a race for California’s first district seat. “The pace of it all and the rush of seeing the results come in was exciting,” Charters recalls.

Eventually, Charters moved to Washington, D.C., where he worked for several California representatives and served as legislative director for Rep. Stevan Pearce (New Mexico). He also briefly ran his own lobbying firm before joining the House Committee on Natural Resources in 2008.

As the committee’s policy director, Charters oversees legislation on American energy production, mineral lands and mining, fisheries and wildlife, public lands, oceans, Native Americans, irrigation and reclamation. “We develop policies that are pursued by Congress and in doing so, influence where we’re heading nationally,” he explains.

One of the most rewarding parts of his job, he says, is working on energy security. “Wind, solar, hydropower, clean coal, American oil and natural gas. All of these energy opportunities come together on my desk at Congress,” he says. “It’s an amazing time to be a part of the debate on how America secures its energy for the future.”