This biography is no longer current; at present, no other official Department of State biographical information is available.
Benson K. Whitney was nominated as the U.S. Ambassador to the Kingdom of Norway by President George W. Bush on September 23, 2005. His nomination was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on October 28, 2005, and he was sworn in by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice on November 28, 2005. He presented his credentials to His Majesty King Harald V on January 12, 2006.
Ambassador Whitney’s career has included extensive experience in business, law, and community affairs. He received his BA magna cum laude from Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, New York and earned his JD from the University of Minnesota Law School in Minneapolis, graduating as an editor of the Law Review, Order of the Coif, magna cum laude, and winner of the Amos Deinard Award for Scholarship.
Ambassador Whitney practiced law with Popham, Haik, Schnobrich, Kaufman and Doty Ltd. specializing in health care, cable television and other regulated industries as well as election law. He then served as Managing General Partner of the Gideon Hixon Fund, an evergreen venture capital fund focused on early stage technology and health care companies in Minnesota and California. Ambassador Whitney was elected President of the Minnesota Venture Capital Association and advised and managed several other venture funds. He has served as Chief Executive Officer of Whitney Management Company, a private investment advisory firm.
Ambassador Whitney has been involved throughout his life in public affairs and government reform efforts in both professional and volunteer capacities on the local, state and national levels. He served as Minnesota Executive Director and Minnesota Finance Chair for Bush-Cheney ’04, as well as Minnesota Finance Chair for the Republican National Committee.
Ambassador Whitney has been a trustee, director, chairman or advisor of a number of non-profits including the Guthrie Theater, Wilderness Inquiry, Persephone Fund, Headwaters Fund, Minnesotans for Term Limits, and the Minneapolis Academy. He is a member of the Basilica of St. Mary in Minneapolis where he has served as a liturgical minister.