Doug made his first run for office in 1970 in the Democratic primary bid seeking to represent Wisconsin in Congress. He served a term as a state senator from 1972—1974 for Kenosha, during which time he authored legislation which provided family planning care to women for the first time in Wisconsin’s history. He was then elected Secretary of State and has been reelected every four years for the past 30 years.
Throughout his years of public service he has fought against the corrupting influence of big money on politics. He has rejected high-spending campaign tactics and has followed the path of the great Wisconsin Senator Bill Proxmire, who depended on his relationship with the people to get elected.
Doug has deep environmental roots in this state. He started Wisconsin's Environmental Decade, now Clean Wisconsin, and has been fighting for local, renewable energy since the 1970's. He helped the late Gaylord Nelson organize the first Earth Day in 1970 and was appointed by President Jimmy Carter as the Assistant Director to the Mid-American Solar Energy Complex.
Doug La Follette earned his Ph.D in organic chemistry from Columbia University and went on to teach as an Assistant Professor of chemistry and ecology at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside.