Doug Berger

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Doug Berger
Berger NCGA.jpg
Member of the North Carolina Senate
from the 7th district
In office
January 2005 – December 2012
Preceded by John H. Kerr III[1]
Succeeded by Louis Pate[2]
Personal details
Born Smithfield, North Carolina
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Annie
Residence Youngsville, North Carolina
Alma mater University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Profession educator, attorney

Douglas E. "Doug" Berger is an attorney, former prosecutor and Democratic politician who served as a member of the North Carolina General Assembly representing the state's 7th Senate district for four terms, starting in 2005. His district included Franklin, Granville, Vance, and Warren counties.


Berger is the former senator for district 18. He was born in Miami, Florida and raised in Smithfield, North Carolina where his father Jack Berger owned and operated a metal fabrication shop "Ace Welding" from 1966 to 1996. In 1978, he graduated from Smithfield Selma High School where he served as the president of his high school political science club and editorial editor of his high school newspaper. From 1978 to 1982, he attended and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he earned Bachelor of Arts Degrees in Political Science and Speech Communications. During his college years he became involved in a wide range of political activities. He worked as a volunteer in the John B. Anderson campaign for president in 1980. Following the 1980 campaign, he initiated the first college chapter of "Americans for Common Sense", a political group led nationally by former presidential candidate George McGovern. Upon graduation, he was employed by Ralph Nader's organization, PIRG. In October 1982, he initiated the South Africa divestment movement at UNC when he produced a report showing how UNC was investing in companies operating in South Africa. Also in 1982, he organized students to support and participate in the effort to stop the dumping of PCBs in Warren County. From 1983 to 1985, he attended the UNC School of Law. In 1983, he organized a campus political party that won 13 out of 27 seats on the student government legislative council. He was elected as a campus representative to serve the UNC School of Law. In 1985, he ran for student body president coming in first out of a field of 9 candidates only to lose in a runoff. From 1985 to 1988, he served as a public school teacher in Kinston, North Carolina, where he taught North Carolina History, United States History and World History. In 1989, he returned to law school and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Law. In 1990, he started his legal career as an Assistant District Attorney for the 11th Judicial District, successfully prosecuting cases ranging from DWI, burglary, sexual assault to murder cases.[3] He then moved to the 9th Judicial District where he served as an Assistant District Attorney from 1991 to 1994. He prosecuted cases in Warren, Franklin, Granville & Vance Counties.[citation needed] From 1994 through 2004, he served in a judicial capacity as a Deputy Commissioner at the North Carolina Industrial Commission, where he rendered over 500 decisions.

Electoral experience[edit]

Berger was first elected in North Carolina's seventh Senate District in 2004.[4] He ran for the Senate after a losing bid for the state's Commissioner of Labor[5] in 2000.

Commissioner of Labor race[edit]

During his race for North Carolina Commissioner of Labor, North Carolina Democratic Party leaders questioned Berger's past involvement with the Democratic Socialists of America. A private internal memo between two party leaders became public during the N.C. Board of Elections investigation of former N.C. Governor Mike Easley.[6] The memo's author states, "We need to decide whether it's worth attempting to find a replacement for Berger now. If not, then we need to work on a damn good response to the attack."

Berger's involvement with the socialist group became an issue in the general election campaign being cited in several news reports. The Associated Press[7] and Triangle Business Journal[8] wrote about his socialist past during the 2000 election. The Carolina Journal brought it up again[9] during Berger's first race for state senate.

North Carolina Commissioner of Labor, November 7, 2000[5]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Cherie K. Berry 1,379,417 50.13
Democratic Doug Berger 1,372,165 49.87

N.C. Senate races[edit]

Berger defeated Republican Harold Frazier in 2004 with 57% percent of the vote.[10] The election box below shows the results of his subsequent elections.

North Carolina Senate District 7, November 2, 2004[10]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Doug Berger 35,091 57
Republican Harold N. Frazier 26,616 43
North Carolina Senate District 7, November 7, 2006[11]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Doug Berger 22,225 61
Republican Chuck Stires 14,423 39
North Carolina Senate District 7, November 4, 2008[12]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Doug Berger 48,874 61
Republican Chuck Stires 28,588 36
North Carolina Senate District 7, November 2, 2010[13]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Doug Berger 27,084 52
Republican Michael Schriver 25,206 48
North Carolina Senate District 18, November 6, 2012[14]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Chad Barefoot 51,873 55.92
Democratic Doug Berger 40,897 44.08

Professional experience[edit]

Berger joined the Law Offices of James Scott Farrin in 2005 where he handles Workers’ Compensation litigation and dispute resolution.

Berger is a member of the North Carolina State Bar, the North Carolina Bar Association, the State Employees Association of North Carolina and the North Carolina Advocates for Justice.


  1. ^ Under legislative districts in effect through the 2002 elections, the 7th Senate District covered a different geographical area, including Greene, Lenoir, and Wayne counties.
  2. ^ Under new legislative districts in effect starting in 2012, the 7th Senate District covers a different geographical area, including Lenoir, Pitt, and Wayne counties.
  3. ^ Gregory, I.(2012)
  4. ^ "N.C. General Assembly Profile". Retrieved 2012-09-13. 
  5. ^ a b "N.C. Board of Elections: 2000 Election of Commissioner of Labor" (PDF). N.C. Board of Elections. Retrieved 2012-09-24. [permanent dead link]
  6. ^ "N.C. Board of Election: Easley Investigation Exhibit pp. 7-8" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-09-13. [permanent dead link]
  7. ^ "Wilmington Star-News: Commissioner Race Shifts Focus September 3, 2000". 2000-09-03. Retrieved 2012-09-13. 
  8. ^ "Triangle Business Journal: Tight elections may usher in big change". 2000-11-06. Retrieved 2012-09-13. 
  9. ^ "A NC Senate Election Checklist". Carolina Journal. 2004-10-29. Retrieved 2012-09-13. 
  10. ^ a b N.C. Board of Elections: 2004 General Election[permanent dead link]
  11. ^ N.C. Board of Elections: 2006 General Election Results[permanent dead link]
  12. ^ "N.C. Board of Elections: 2008 - General Election Results". 2010-03-17. Retrieved 2012-09-13. 
  13. ^ "N.C. Board of Elections: 2010 - General Election Results". 2010-12-20. Retrieved 2012-09-13. 
  14. ^ N.C. Board of Elections - 2012 Election Results

External links[edit]