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About Senator Baruth

PBaruthPhil Baruth currently serves as the Senate President Pro Tempore of the Vermont Senate. He has held a variety of other leadership positions in the chamber since his original election in 2010:  four years as Majority Leader (2013-16); four years as Chair of Senate Education (2017-20); and Chair of the Senate Sexual Harrassment Panel (2015-16).  His rank-and-file committee service has been similarly varied, including stints on Appropriations, Judiciary, Agriculture, Education, and Economic Development, Housing and General Affairs. In 2016, Phil was named Legislator of the Year by Main Street Alliance for his work on Vermont’s Paid Sick Days law. Two years later, he received the Founders Award from the Vermont Medical Society, in recognition of his role in strengthening Vermont’s gun safety laws. 

Prior to 2010, Phil spent a dozen years as an award-winning commentator for Vermont Public Radio, where he also hosted Camel’s Hump Radio, a weekly program featuring dramatic readings of classic adventure stories.  He has spent the last thirty years writing both novels and non-fiction as well. The X President (Bantam), a darkly comic take on the life and legacy of Bill Clinton, became a New York Times Notable Book in 2003; The Brothers Boswell (Soho), his last novel, was listed as one of the Best Books of 2009 by The Washington Post. His most recent book – a full-length biography of Senator Patrick Leahy (University Press of New England) – appeared in 2017. 

Phil lives in the New North End of Burlington.  He has taught in the English Department at the University of Vermont since 1993, where he specializes in Creative Writing, Postmodern American Literature and Culture, Eighteenth-Century British Literature, and Vermont Literature.