Home About Chat Users Issues Party Candidates Polling Firms Media News Polls Calendar Key Races United States President Senate House Governors International

New User Account
"A comprehensive, collaborative elections resource." 
Email: Password:

  Owens, Bill
<-  2006-01-01  
NameBill Owens
AddressP.O. Box 44369
Denver, Colorado 80201, United States
Born October 22, 1950 (71 years)
Last ModifedBarack O-blame-a
Nov 22, 2012 09:01pm
Tags Caucasian - Divorced - Catholic - Christian - Straight -
InfoWilliam F. "Bill" Owens

Bill Owens was born in Ft. Worth, Texas, where he graduated from Paschal High School. While a sophomore in high school, Owens was appointed a Page in the U.S. House of Representatives by Congressman (and later, Speaker of the House) Jim Wright. Owens was assigned by the Doorkeeper of the House to the Republican cloakroom, where he worked for notable Republicans who were serving in the House then such as George H.W. Bush, Gerald Ford and Bob Dole.

He attended Stephen F. Austin State University where he served as vice president and president of the student body. While at Stephen F. Austin State University, Owens served as a coordinator of the Students for George Bush in George H.W. Bush's unsuccessful campaign for the U.S. Senate. It was during this campaign that Owens would first meet future President George W. Bush.

Owens earned a Master’s degree in Public Affairs from the University of Texas, Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs, where he was awarded a full two-year fellowship.

Following his graduate work, Owens accepted a position in the Washington D.C. office of Touche Ross & Co. (now Deloitte). He moved to Colorado in 1977 after accepting a position with the Gates Corporation. He later served as Executive Director of the Colorado Petroleum Association and as Executive Vice President of the Rocky Mountain Oil and Gas Association.

Bill Owens served as a member of the Colorado House of Representatives from 1982 until 1988, and as a State Senator from 1988 to 1994, representing Aurora and Arapahoe County.

While in the Legislature, Owens was active in tax reform, privatization and school choice initiatives, sponsoring the nation's third charter school law. He served as Chair of both the House and Senate State, Veterans and Military Affairs Committees and as Chair of the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) Energy Committee, as well as on NCSL’s Executive Committee.

Owens was elected State Treasurer in 1994, where he was responsible for managing the state's $5 billion in investment funds. Owens also served during this time on the board of Colorado's $25 billion pension fund, the Colorado Public Employees Retirement Association (PERA).

Treasurer Owens was elected as the 40th Governor of Colorado in the 1998 governor's race, when he defeated Democratic opponent Gail Schoettler by only 8,300 votes (less than one percent of ballots cast). When he was inaugurated in January of 1999, Owens became Colorado’s first Republican governor in 24 years. His platform was three pronged: cut taxes, repair Colorado’s aging infrastructure, and continue school accountability reforms.

Owens won reelection in the 2002 governor's race by defeating the Democratic candidate, Boulder businessman Rollie Heath, 64%-32% – the greatest majority in Colorado history. Shortly before the election, Owens was proclaimed by National Review as "America's Best Governor".[3]

In the summer of 2002, when the Hayman Fire and Coal Seam Fire ravaged much of Western Colorado, Owens made perhaps the first major press faux-pas of his tenure. Responding to a reporter’s question following an aerial tour of the fires (“What does it look like up there?”), Owens said “It looks as if all of Colorado is burning today”.[4] Many western slope residents blamed Owens for driving away tourists with the press’s truncated version of the quote (“All of Colorado is burning”).[5]

In November 2002, Colorado voters rejected Owens’ water storage initiative, Referendum A. The referendum failed to win a single county in the state, as opponents successfully savaged the measure as a “blank check”.[2] Owens would later joke, “it takes a particularly adept Governor to lose a water referendum in the face of a 300-year drought.” While the initiative was supported by most Colorado newspapers and business groups, it was opposed by the environmental community and many on Colorado's Western Slope who feared it would lead to the Front Range using more Western Slope water.

Leading up to the 2004 primary, Owens caused some controversy in the Republican Party by announcing support for Bob Schaffer's run to replace retiring U.S. Senator Ben Campbell, but then endorsing Pete Coors when Coors later announced his entry two days later.

Owens is a principal in JF Companies, a Denver-based land and water development firm with interests in Colorado, Arizona and Texas. He is on a number of public boards including Key Energy (NYSE:KEG); Highlands Acquistion (AMEX:HIA); Keating Capital, Inc.[6]; and FESCO, a Russian holding company listed on the Moscow exchange which is Russia's second largest railroad. Owens is also on a number of private boards including Great Western Oil and Gas and Vision Logistics, and advises two private equity funds.

Owens joined the University of Denver's Institute for Public Policy Studies in January 2007 as a senior fellow.

Owens was an early supporter of Mitt Romney's 2008 Presidential campaign[7]. After Romney dropped out of the race, Owens worked actively for John McCain's campaign.

Owens and his wife Frances married in January 1975. In January 2008, he and Frances announced they would divorce.[8] They have three children, Monica (born in 1983), Mark (born in 1986), and Brett (born in 1991).

DateFirmApproveDisapproveDon't Know
09/14/2006-09/17/2006 Survey USA 52.00% ( 5.0) 42.00% ( 5.0) 6.00% ( 0.0)
07/14/2006-07/16/2006 Survey USA 57.00% ( 4.0) 37.00% ( 5.0) 6.00% ( 1.0)
06/09/2006-06/11/2006 Survey USA 53.00% ( 6.0) 42.00% ( 6.0) 5.00% ( 0.0)
02/10/2006-02/12/2006 Survey USA 59.00% ( 0.0) 36.00% ( 2.0) 5.00% ( 2.0)
01/13/2006-01/15/2006 Survey USA 59.00% ( 6.0) 34.00% ( 6.0) 7.00% ( 1.0)
12/09/2005-12/11/2005 Survey USA 53.00% ( 1.0) 40.00% ( 2.0) 6.00% ( 2.0)
10/10/2005-10/12/2005 Public Opinion Strategies (R) 56.00% ( 0.0) 35.00% ( 0.0) 9.00% ( 0.0)
05/06/2005-05/08/2005 Survey USA 54.00% ( 0.0) 38.00% ( 0.0) 8.00% ( 0.0)

Title Purchase Contributor

Start Date End Date Type Title Contributor

Date Category Headline Article Contributor
Jan 17, 2008 09:45am General Former (Colorado) Gov. Bill Owens, Wife Frances Owens Divorce  Article AJ 
Jun 14, 2005 03:15pm Profile Colo. Gov. Drops Off GOP National Radar  Article RP 
Apr 01, 2005 02:00pm News Colo. Gov. Apologizes for 'Natives' Remark  Article particleman 
Mar 30, 2005 01:00pm News Owens mulls emergency contraception bill  Article Brandonius Maximus 
Mar 06, 2005 02:00pm Profile Is the party over for Bill Owens?  Article User 490 
Sep 01, 2003 12:00am News Owens, wife of 28 years separate  Article FreedomDemocrat 

[View All
Previous Messages]
Importance? 9.00000 Average


  11/05/2002 CO Governor Won 62.62% (+28.97%)
  08/13/2002 CO Governor - R Primary Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
  11/03/1998 CO Governor Won 49.04% (+0.62%)
  08/11/1998 CO Governor - R Primary Won 59.20% (+18.49%)
  11/08/1994 CO Treasurer Won 59.23% (+18.45%)
  08/09/1994 CO Treasurer - R Primary Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
  11/03/1992 CO Senate 27 Won 100.00% (+100.00%)
  11/08/1988 CO Senate 27 Won 70.46% (+40.93%)
  11/06/1986 CO State House 49 Won 61.08% (+22.17%)
  11/06/1984 CO State House 49 Won 73.29% (+46.58%)
  11/02/1982 CO State House 49 Won 68.21% (+36.41%)
  06/24/2014 CO US Senate - R Primary Lost 0.00% (-100.00%)
  06/03/2008 US President - R Primaries Lost 0.00% (-46.49%)
CO US Senate - R Primary - Jun 28, 2022 R Joe O'Dea
CO Treasurer - R Primary - Jun 28, 2022 R Lang Sias
Aurora, CO Mayor - Nov 05, 2019 R Mike Coffman
CO US Senate - R Primary - Jun 28, 2016 R Jon Keyser
CO US President - R Caucus - Apr 08, 2016 R Jeb Bush
CO US President - R Caucuses - Feb 07, 2012 R Mitt Romney
CO Governor - R Primary - Aug 10, 2010 R Scott McInnis
CO District 07 - R Primary - Aug 10, 2010 I Ryan Frazier
CO US Senate - R Primary - Aug 10, 2010 R Jane Norton
CO US President - R Caucus - Feb 05, 2008 R Mitt Romney
US President - R Primaries - Jun 03, 2008 R Mitt Romney
CO Governor- R Primary - Aug 08, 2006 R Bob Beauprez
Amendment 36 (Electoral Votes-CO) - Nov 02, 2004 NO No
CO US Senate - R Primary - Aug 10, 2004 R Peter "Pete" Coors