Klobuchar and Franken were longtime advocates of Heins to serve as the U.S. Ambassador to Norway
Heins previously served as a Partner at a Minnesota Law Firm and founded Minnesota Advocates for Human Rights
WASHINGTON, DC – After major efforts from U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken, Sam Heins, a Minnesotan native, was sworn in as the new U.S. Ambassador to Norway today. Klobuchar and Franken supported Heins’ nomination to serve as the U.S. Ambassador to Norway, taking to the Senate floor many times to call for his confirmation. The U.S. had been without an ambassador to Norway for 869 days. Many State Department nominees for other posts have been blocked from consideration for months and years. Heins is an attorney from Minnesota and founded Minnesota Advocates for Human Rights.
“The U.S. and Norway have a diplomatic partnership that lasts more than 200 years. Now that Sam has finally been confirmed and sworn in as Ambassador he will strengthen our longstanding relationship with this key European ally,” Klobuchar said. “Minnesota is home to more people of Norwegian heritage than anywhere except Norway itself, so it is only fitting that the new ambassador hails from our state. I have no doubt that Sam will serve our country well and make our state proud.”
“Our nation shares a strong bond with Norway, and nowhere is that more evident than in Minnesota, which has the largest Norwegian population in the country,” Franken said. “That’s why we fought so hard to get Sam Heins—a uniquely well-qualified nominee and, not to mention, a Minnesotan—confirmed as Ambassador to Norway. We worked hard to get his nomination across the finish line, and I was pleased to be in attendance during his swearing in. I look forward to working with Sam on developing an even stronger relationship between Minnesota and Norway.”
Samuel Heins most recently served as a Partner at Heins Mills & Olson in Minneapolis, Minnesota, from 1994 to 2013. Mr. Heins was a Partner at Opperman Heins and Paquin from 1989 to 1994, a Partner at Tanick and Heins from 1976 to 1989, and an Associate Attorney at the Firestone Law Firm from 1973 to 1976. In 1983, Mr. Heins founded Minnesota Advocates for Human Rights, where he served as First Chair and continues to serve as a member. He is a Board Member of the Ploughshares Fund, Trustee of the PEN American Center, and Board Member and Vice Chair of the Center for Victims of Torture, which he co-founded. He previously served as a Board Member and Vice President of the American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota. Mr. Heins received a B.A. and J.D. from the University of Minnesota.