He was born in Butte, Montana on December 17, 1916. He attended Butte public schools, the Montana School of Mines, 1934–1936, and graduated from the Montana State University Law School (now the University of Montana), Missoula, Montana in 1940. He served four years of overseas duty in the Navy during the World War II. Upon returning to the States, Olsen married Mary Margaret Williams, of Butte. They had three children - Margaret Rae Olsen, Anna Kristine Olsen, and Karin Synneve Olsen Billings. Arnold and Margaret have 5 grandchildren; John David Childs, Todd Arnold Graetz, Kara Ann Graetz; Jonathan Olsen Billings and Luke Alexander Billings.
Olsen opened a private law practice in 1940. He served as attorney general of Montana, 1948-1957. He then had several unsuccessful bids for public office in the state of Montana, including a run for governor in 1956,and a spot on the State Supreme Court in 1958.
He was elected as a Democrat to the Eighty-seventh Congress and to the four succeeding Congresses (January 3, 1961-January 3, 1971). He was an unsuccessful candidate for reelection to the Ninety-second Congress in 1970, losing to Republican candidate Richard G. Shoup. An unsuccessful candidate for election to the Ninety-third Congress in 1972, and an unsuccessful candidate for nomination to the Ninety-fourth Congress in 1974. He was appointed judge of the second judicial district of Montana, 1975–1990, a position on which he served until his death in 1990.
He died on October 9, 1990, in Helena and is interned in Butte beside his wife Margaret.
|United States House of Representatives|
|United States Representative for the 1st Congressional District of Montana
Richard G. Shoup
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