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Leonard L. Boswell (D)
Date Of Birth & Birthplace: 1/10/1934 (Harrison County, MO)
Race: White
Religion: Mormon
Residence: Des Moines, IA
Education: BA in Business Administration from Graceland College, Lamoni, IA
Occupation: Farmer
Office Type: U.S. House -- Iowa District 3 

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Leonard L. Boswell was raised on farms in Ringgold and Decatur counties in southern Iowa. He attended public schools in Ringgold County, and graduated from Lamoni High School.

He received a bachelor's degree in business administration from Graceland College in Lamoni. He was drafted into the U.S. Army in 1956, entering the military as a private. He served 20 years in the Army, retiring as a lieutenant colonel.

During his service he became a pilot, and served two tours in Vietnam flying helicopters and won two Bronze Stars.

Boswell retired from the Army in 1976, moved back to Iowa and began farming the family operation. In addition, for 13 years he was chairman of the board of the local elevator cooperative.

In 1984, Boswell was elected to the state Senate, where he served until 1996, when was elected to the U.S. House.

Because of redistricting, he announced he would move to Des Moines to run for the 3rd District in 2002.

Boswell's wife, Dody, is a teacher at Graceland University. The couple has three grown children, Diana, a teacher, Cindy, a computer company executive and Joe, a project manager with the state's Department of Human Services.

Past Campaigns:

Leonard Boswell was elected to the U.S. House in 1996 with 49 percent of the vote against Republican Mike Mahaffey. Boswell was re-elected in 1998, receiving 57 percent of the vote in his race against Republican Larry McKibben.

He was elected to the state Senate in 1984, and was elected president of the Senate in 1992. He has won landslide victories _ he won in 1992 with more than 60 percent of the vote _ despite representing an overwhelmingly Republican legislative district. Boswell bases his appeal on his status as a prominent local farmer and businessman.

In 1994, Democrats worried the party was getting an image of having drifted too far to the left and Boswell was picked as the party's candidate for lieutenant governor to counter that image. He garnered only 43 percent of the vote, but Boswell campaigned widely, including much of the sprawling 27-county 3rd District.

When Republican Rep. Jim Ross Lightfoot announced his bid for the U.S. Senate in 1996, Boswell decided to make a run for the open seat. He scored a 4,000-vote victory in the primary over Charles Krogmeier, a top official in the state Attorney General's office.

He was re-elected in 1998, 2000 and 2002.

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