LEONARD (LEN) BECK JORDAN was born in Mount Pleasant, Utah, on May 15, 1899. After serving in the U.S. Army as a second lieutenant, Jordan returned home and entered the University of Oregon. He graduated in 1923, and then established himself as a rancher in Wallowa, Oregon. After moving to Idaho, Jordan entered politics in 1947 as a member of the Idaho state legislature, an office he held until 1949. He won the 1950 Republican gubernatorial nomination and was elected governor of Idaho. During his tenure, the state board of education implemented a sixty-five percent formula on transportation charges, which was to be incorporated in the school equalization program; slot machines were banned; unemployment insurance, employment, and job training services were merged; the state highway commission was initiated; and a bill was sanctioned that established a ton gross weight of one ton mile tax. Jordan also advocated strongly for a long-range advanced highway program and he supported the need for implementing the fundamentals in elementary schools and in high schools. After finishing his term, Jordan secured an appointment as chairman of the International Joint Commission, a position he held until 1957. He took a leave from his chairman duties in 1956, to take a job with the Tudor Engineering Company to analyze the water resource development in Afghanistan. He also served as a member of the U.S. Senate from 1962 to 1973, and was a member of the International Development Advisory Board from 1958 to 1959. Governor Leonard B. Jordan died on June 30, 1983, and was buried at the Cloverdale Cemetery.

Sources:

Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress

Idaho State Historical Society

Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 1, Westport, Conn.; Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.