Republican senator from Montana

Conrad Burns was born in Gallatin, Missouri, on January 25, 1935, to Russell and Mary Frances (Knight) Burns. His mother was an active Democrat, working as a county chairman and state committeewoman. Burns attended Pleasant Grove country day school, and graduated from Gallatin High School in 1952.

He enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps after two years at the College of Agriculture at the University of Missouri. With the Marine Corps he was a small arms instructor and served in the Far East. After the Marines he worked for TWA and Ozark airlines, and then in 1962, he became a field representative for Polled Hereford World Magazine and moved to Billings, Montana.

Burns than started a career in radio and television broadcasting of agricultural market news as well as being named the first manager of the Northern International Livestock Expo in 1968 as well as working for the Billings Livestock Commission. He was a farm and ranch news reporter for a Billings television station before creating the Northern Ag Network in 1975 with four radio stations. By 1986, when he sold his interest in the network, it served 31 radio and six television stations in Montana and Wyoming.

Burn’s wife Phyllis Kuhlmann of North Platte, Nebraska, who he married in 1967 is a teacher. She graduated from Concordia Teachers College in Seward, Nebraska and has taught at Trinity Lutheran Grade School in Billings and various Lutheran Schools in the D.C. area. They have two childern, a daughter, Keely, is a doctor who one day wants to practice medicine in rural Montana. Their son, Garrett, lives in Tucson, Arizona, with his wife, Kate. The Burns family belongs to Atonement Lutheran Church in Billings.

In 1998 Burns was elected Montana’s 19th senator after defeating incumbent John Melcher. He has since been re-elected two times.


His website and contact info is:

187 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington DC 20510
(202) 224-2644

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