Derek Schmidt is a native of Independence, Kansas, where his parents worked as small business owners. He graduated from KU and put himself through law school at Georgetown while working for Senator Nancy Landon Kassebaum. As an attorney, Derek has broad experience in local, state and federal law. He worked as an Assistant Kansas Attorney General in the consumer protection division, served as general counsel to U.S. Senator Chuck Hagel and later served as Special Counsel to Governor Bill Graves. Derek also works as a city prosecutor and as a private practice attorney. Derek was elected to the Kansas Senate in 2000. Since then, he has served as vice chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee and currently serves as Senate Majority Leader. The Kansas Sheriff’s Association recognized Derek as a Friend of Law Enforcement and the NFIB-Kansas has named him a Guardian of Small Business. Derek and his wife Jennifer have two daughters.