- The Washington Times - Sunday, July 29, 2001

After 26 years of service to the Senate, Secretary for the Minority Elizabeth Letchworth will retire in August, the first and only woman to hold the post for the Republicans.
"Elizabeth has been a truly outstanding secretary for the majority and for the minority," Senate Minority Leader Trent Lott, Mississippi Republican, said in a statement. "She always has been a staffer dedicated to the institution of the Senate and to all senators who serve here, and that is why she is so respected by both Republican and Democratic senators."
The Democratic caucus passed a resolution July 17 commending her for her work for the Senate. The resolution lauded her "institutional memory," "unflappable demeanor" and "good humor," and said that she will be "missed by senators and staff alike on both sides of the aisle."
Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle said: "Elizabeth is a remarkable professional. She is knowledgeable, she is responsible and she is fair."
Mrs. Letchworth was secretary during multiple power shifts in the Senate as well as the impeachment of President Clinton.
"Her greatest asset is she just has a visceral instinct for the rules of the Senate," Mr. Lott said. "She also has an instinct for how to get through the difficult periods in the Senate."
Reflecting on the events during her time as secretary, Mrs. Letchworth said she hopes that she brought "some civility to the Senate during times of chaos."
Tom Korologos, a Republican lobbyist and founder of Timmons and Company, has known Mrs. Letchworth since she started as a page. "She's an institution," he said. "She's the heart and soul of the place. It is a huge loss to have Elizabeth go."
"She's one of the characters in this town that makes the trains run on time. I can't say enough good of her and I think you can get senators to say the same all 100 of them."
Mrs. Letchworth began working in the Senate as a page during high school. "I worked my way up from the bottom," she said. "I started out as a page, so you can't get any lower than that."
She subsequently worked in the Cloakroom, worked as a floor assistant and as a permanent staff member with then-Republican leader Hugh Scott. Besides Mr. Scott and Mr. Lott, she served with Howard Baker of Tennessee and Bob Dole of Kansas.
Mrs. Letchworth is one of five persons to hold the Republican Party Senate secretary position since it was created in the 1930s. Acting as the liaison between the Republican leader and fellow Republican senators, she oversees the legislative schedule, scheduling of presiding officers, cloakroom matters and the Senate Republican page program.
Mrs. Letchworth said it was an "absolute joy" to work for Mr. Lott and that she will miss the people that she works with. She added, however, that she is looking forward to an end to the unpredictable hours. Mrs. Letchworth, who has previously worked in small business ventures, will be going into business with her husband, Ron Letchworth.
Mrs. Letchworth attended Mary Washington College in Fredericksburg. A Virginia native, she lives in Manassas with her husband and has four grown stepchildren.

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