The North Dakota Catholic Bishops' Voice on Public Policy

Formed in 1969 by the Roman Catholic Bishops of North Dakota, the North Dakota Catholic Conference is the means by which the Catholic bishops of the state act together on public policy matters for the mutual well-being of the Catholic Church and all citizens throughout the state. By collaborating with political and public organizations, the North Dakota Catholic Conference, inspired by Sacred Scripture and the teachings of the Church, works at the appropriate level of government for legislation and regulations that reflect the Gospel message of respecting for human life and promoting the common good.

The North Dakota Catholic Conference:

  • Serves as the official liaison for the dioceses of Fargo and Bismarck in matters of public policy
  • Operates a Legislative Action Network connecting parishioners to the their local legislators
  • Assists priests, educators, parishioners, and citizens on matters concerning Catholic social teaching and public policy
  • Educates on Catholic social teaching and public policy matters
  • Works with Catholic health care institutions to further the Church's health care ministry

A Multi-Issue Public Policy Voice for the Church

Dedicated to contributing the Church's message to matters affecting human life, the poor, families, and the common good, the North Dakota Catholic Conference addresses a broad spectrum of issues.

  • Respect and Protection for all Human Life
  • Health Care
  • Religious Liberty
  • Concern and Respect for the Poor and Powerless
  • Children
  • Education
  • Family Life
  • Economic Justice
  • Rural Life
  • Environmental Justice

Executive Director

Christopher Dodson is the Executive Director and General Counsel for the North Dakota Catholic Conference, the public policy voice of the Catholic bishops of North Dakota.

Dodson received his bachelor's degree from the University of California at Riverside and his law degree from the University of California at Berkeley. He converted to the Catholic Church during his law school tenure.

Dodson started with the North Dakota Catholic Conference in 1994 and has served as its executive director since 1995. He has also served as a consultant to the USCCB Committee on Pro-Life Activities, a board member of the National Catholic Rural Life Conference, vice-president and president of the National Association of State Catholic Conference Directors, and the ad hoc pro-life legal advisory group of the USCCB General Counsel’s office. He also serves on the board of directors of the North Dakota Conference of Churches.

Dodson is a member of the National Diocesan Attorneys Association, and the state bars of North Dakota and California.

He lives in Jamestown with his wife, Rosalie.

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Logo for the North Dakota Catholic Conference

The logo retains the color, font, shape, and arrangement of the old logo, signifying continuity with the conference’s history. The background consists of two halves of pointed arches, evoking church architecture and bishops’ miters, and representing the bishops of Bismarck and Fargo and their respective dioceses. The two half-arches join to form a solid colored arch, representing the unity with which the two bishops speak through the conference. An outline of the State of North Dakota rests at the foot of the cross, where we must ultimately place all concerns of the state and its people.