Brian Rude, Vice President, External and Member Relations, joined Dairyland in May 2000, following 17 years of service in the Wisconsin State Legislature, including one term in the State Assembly and four terms in the State Senate. From 1993 to 1996, and again in 1998, Rude was President of the Wisconsin State Senate. He also served four years as the ranking minority member of the Senate Utilities Committee.
In January 2003, Rude was honored with an appointment to the Wisconsin Agriculture, Trade & Consumer Protection Board by Gov. Jim Doyle.
Rude graduated from Luther College (Decorah, Iowa), with a bachelor of arts degree in history and political science. He also earned his master of arts degree in public administration and public policy from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Rude’s responsibilities at Dairyland include coordination of legislative strategy, monitoring public issues and working with member community relations in the four-state area served by Dairyland.
Prior to being elected to the Wisconsin Legislature, Rude worked at The Trane Company in corporate communications, and served as a research analyst in the Wisconsin and Iowa State Senates.
He is active in many regional and local community organizations. Rude is Chair of the Wisconsin Public Utility Institute, past Chair of the Wisconsin Historical Society, Secretary of the Vesterheim Museum Board in Decorah, Iowa, and is a member of Coon Valley Lions, Westby Sons of Norway, and the Coon Valley Industrial Development Committee. In 2017, he was honored to be selected as the Festmaster for La Crosse Oktoberfest.