Craig Barnes grew up under the cottonwoods of eastern Colorado in a world driven by hard work but redeemed by grand champions at the County Fair, horse races, baseball in wheat fields, and a three-room country school. Abruptly in 1950, war shuffled his world, and with his family Barnes was transplanted to England, Greece and Switzerland, and later Burma, Germany, and Russia.
Barnes has had a very diverse employment background as well. Over the years he has worked as an infantry officer, a laborer, a trial lawyer, a lobbyist, and run for Congress in Denver. He initiated the Sunshine and Sunset concepts in Colorado legislation, was co-counsel on the Denver school integration case and the nation's first comparable worth case for women, and was a newspaper columnist for the Rocky Mountain News and a regular commentator on National Public Radio.
In the 1980s he negotiated nuclear issues with leaders in the Academy of Sciences in the Kremlin. In the 1990's he facilitated talks between opposing sides in the war between Armenia and Azerbaijan and thereafter led talks to knit together trans-boundary water agreements between Kazakhstan, Uzbeckistan, Tajickistan, and Kyrghizstan. These negotiations led to the first multi-year, multi-lateral agreement n the history of these new republics.
In the 21st century, turning his attention from international politics to writing and theater, Barnes published Growing Up True, a memoir of life on the prairies of Colorado, winning the Colorado Book Award and the Bookpick 76 designation. Barnes' Elizabethan trilogy, including Queen Elizabeth I (2001), King's Yellow (2003), and The Last Tudor, (2008), was written in a modernized Shakespearean lyric. All three have been produced and performed in Santa Fe, NM to standing ovations.
In 2006, in the midst of growing concern about the war in Iraq, Barnes wrote and directed Ed Asner in a staged reading of a trial drama, A Nation Deceived, American's First Presidential Felony Trial. Also in 2006, Barnes published a history and analysis of the roles of women as they appear in archeology and myth before the patriarchy, In Search Of The Lost Feminine, Decoding the Myths that Radically Reshaped Civilization. This book was the recipient of Book USA and Eric Hoffer Awards.
Barnes' most recent book, a history of the courageous pioneers of the rule of law and democracy's ongoing fight against modern feudalism at home and abroad, is titled Democracy At the Crossroads: Princes, Peasants, Poets and Presidents in the Struggle for (and against) the Rule of Law. This book will be published in November 2009.
He divides his time between Santa Fe, New Mexico, and Marble, Colorado. He has four grown children, eleven grandchildren and has been married to his wife Mikaela for 51 years.