Jeffrey Flake is a politician and former United States Senator for Arizona. On July 13, 2021, U.S. President Joe Biden nominated Flake to serve as ambassador to Turkey.
He is a Republican and represented the Sixth Congressional District of Arizona from 2013 to 2019. In October 2017 he announced that he would not seek reelection in 2018. He served in the Judiciary Committee, the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, the Special Committee on Aging, and the Foreign Relations Committee, becoming chair of various subcommittees. Flake was also one of the bi-partisan "Gang of Eight" that pushed through a Senate immigration-reform bill in 2013. He has been a vocal critic of former U.S. president Donald Trump. He has written a book that slams Trump (Conscience of a Conservative: A Rejection of Destructive Politics and a Return to Principle), he condemned Trump on the Senate floor, and he charged in a 2018 speech to the National Press Club that his party “might not deserve to lead” because of its blind loyalty to Trump. He was interviewed for the PBS Frontline program in an episode entitled "Trump's Takeover."
After his term ended in January 2019, Flake was hired by CBS where he contributed to CBS News on CBS This Morning and CBS Evening News. He is a Distinguished Fellow at Arizona State University and a Distinguished Fellow at the Sorensen Center for Moral and Ethical Leadership at Brigham Young University. He also serves on the Senior Advisory Committee at Harvard’s Institute of Politics.
Flake was born in Snowflake, Arizona (named in part for his great-great-grandfather, William J. Flake). After serving as a Missionary in Zimbabwe and South Africa for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Flake graduated from Brigham Young University, where he received a B.A. in international relations and an M.A. in political science. While at BYU, he met his wife, Cheryl. They live in Mesa with their five children.
In 1987, Jeff started his career at a public affairs firm in Washington, D.C. Soon thereafter, Flake served as executive director of the Foundation for Democracy in Namibia, monitoring Namibia's independence process.
In 1992, Jeff and his family moved back to Arizona where he was named executive director of the Goldwater Institute, a think tank and research organization. In this role, Jeff worked to promote a conservative philosophy of less government, more freedom, and individual responsibility.
Flake was elected to the United States House of Representatives in 2000, where he served for 12 years. He served a six-year single term in the Senate. In November 2006 Congressman Flake was profiled on 60 Minutes.