DENVER, Colo. -- State Senator John Cooke (R-Greeley) today expressed gratitude for being named the Colorado General Assembly’s 2015 "Rookie of the Year" by Law Week Colorado, which praised the former Weld County Sheriff for his ability to reach across the aisle and get bills passed, dealing with everything from law enforcement oversight to healthcare.
The publication credited Cooke’s long career in law enforcement for bringing added credibility to his legislative work, particularly on related issues.
"Few legislators, freshmen or veteran, can claim Cooke’s legislative impact in this past session," said LWC. "2015 was a year for law enforcement-related measures, from the aforementioned reform package to the finally-enacted felony DUI bill, and Cooke’s background lent additional credibility to these and other successful bills."
But law enforcement wasn’t the only issue Cooke tackled, according to LWC, which noted his participation on key committees and leadership on workforce development and healthcare related bills. "With that exposure to a wider variety of concerns, the next session may see Cooke further expanding from a single-issue lawmaker," said the publication.
Cooke thanked Law Week Colorado for the recognition and pledged to continue working for bipartisan solutions, while also upholding conservative values, in the 2016 legislative session.
"I'm as conservative as they come," said Cooke, "but you just can't get anything constructive done in a politically split legislature unless you're willing to reach out and find areas of agreement with your liberal colleagues. The quality bills that came out of this session are a credit to folks from both parties who were willing to find that common ground."
Senate President Bill Cadman (R-Colorado Springs) also won praise from LWC for being the legislature's “most cooperative” lawmaker. "In a legislative session defined by division — marked by the partisan split between the chambers of the legislature — Republican Senate President Bill Cadman showed that bipartisanship can work," said LWC, noting the success of numerous Cadman-backed bills that had a Democrat co-sponsor.
Senator Chris Holbert (R-Douglas County) also stood out for his work on bipartisan school testing and business bills, according to LWC.