The Western Governors’ Association 2019 Winter Meeting brought 11 Governors and more than 300 attendees to Nevada for public discussions of topics such as reinvigorating rural economies in the West, the epidemic of missing and murdered indigenous women (MMIW), advances in agriculture technology and more.

Governors attending the Dec. 13-14 meeting in Las Vegas, as seen in the photo above, included from left, bottom row: Brad Little (Idaho), Gary Herbert (Utah), WGA Vice Chair Kate Brown (Oregon), Doug Ducey (Arizona), Jared Polis (Colorado). From left, top row: David Ige (Hawaii), WGA Chair Doug Burgum (North Dakota), Kevin Stitt (Oklahoma), Kristi Noem (South Dakota), Steve Bullock (Montana), and Steve Sisolak (Nevada).

DAY ONE: Western Governors, led by WGA Chair and North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum (pictured), launched the meeting by tackling the challenge of reinvigorating rural communities, discussing the evolution of the state-federal relationship, and engaging with special guests Beth Ford, CEO of Land O'Lakes, and inventor Dean Kamen.

DAY TWO: Western Governors heard the emotional story of drug addiction's toll on young people from Barbara Collins, Principal of Mission High School in Las Vegas, the nation’s first public school for students in recovery from substance abuse. The Governors also examined blockchain's role in cybersecurity and learned more about the epidemic of missing and murdered indigenous women.

RESOLUTIONS: Western Governors formally approved policy resolutions on: Strengthening the State-Federal Relationship; States’ Share of Royalties and Leasing Revenues from Federal Lands and Minerals; Tax-Exempt Federal Lands and Secure Rural Schools; Financial Assurance Regulation; and Physical and Behavioral Health Care in Western States.

CENTER OF EXCELLENCE: WGA launched the Western Governors’ Center of Excellence for Improving the State-Federal Relationship, an online repository of resources on federalism issues developed through the Governors’ research.

FOUNDATION WEBSITE: WGA debuted a web presence for its recently reinvented Western Governors' Foundation that includes information about its leadership as well as how to offer support. Learn more

sign up for our newsletters