Above: Sen. Bloomfield (right) visits his son, Mark, who was training in Mississippi last fall prior to his deployment.
Sen. Dave Bloomfield has not yet become accustomed to being called senator.
“It’s a title I don’t use a lot,” Bloomfield said.
He was appointed by the governor in December 2010 to fill the legislative seat for district 17, and he’s still getting used to the idea of it. Bloomfield said he understands that the title goes along with the territory, then paused and said, “Just call me Dave.”
Bloomfield grew up on a small farm in Dakota County and later became a truck driver and farmer. He noted that one of the more interesting things to happen in his life was his father’s death when Dave was only 8 years old.
But Bloomfield doesn’t view losing his father at a young age as an event that adversely shaped his life. He believes things happen in life and you deal with it and move on.
Which is exactly what his mother did by raising four children alone on the farm.
Edna Bloomfield, who was awarded Ak-Sar-Ben’s Mother of the Year, was actively involved in politics. While she didn’t try to shape her children’s political beliefs, he said, she did make sure her children were informed.
Usually when people are informed about what’s going on, Bloomfield said, they form an interest in politics.
And that he did.
Bloomfield went on to serve in Vietnam. He was not the first in his family to serve in the U.S. Military, nor was he the last. His brother, father and great-grandfather all served and Bloomfield’s youngest son, Mark, 27, currently is serving in Afghanistan.
Given this family tradition, Bloomfield has made it one of his personal goals this session to contact, through his office, those in his district who are actively serving.
And of all the items on his list of things he’d like to accomplish at the Legislature, that might be one of the easier ones.
One thing that became apparent to Bloomfield in his years traveling as a truck driver is that Nebraska has to find a way to promote economic growth. He added that Nebraska has the most energetic work force in the country, but its young people are leaving the state.
“We need to let the people outside of Nebraska know what’s here,” he said.
Bloomfield noted that he may tend to be a bit “bull-headed” and said he does not change his mind easily.
But he is still open to learning.
As a new member of the Legislature, Bloomfield said he plans to follow some advice he’s received from his colleagues: step back and observe.
A resident of rural Hoskins, Bloomfield has four children: Christina Mundil, Charles Bloomfield, Beth Brader and Mark Bloomfield. The senator and his wife, Dee Boeckenhauer, also enjoy nine grandchildren.