When he was fifteen years old, Mr. Bedell took $50 saved from his newspaper route and started a fishing tackle manufacturing company. Today, Berkley & Company, located in Spirit Lake, Iowa, is one of the world’s largest fishing tackle manufacturing companies. In 1964, Mr. Bedell was named the nation’s first Small Business Person of the Year. He represented northwest Iowa in the U.S. Congress from 1975 to 1987, at which time he retired because of contracting Lyme disease. He believes both his Lyme disease and cancer were cured by unconventional treatments. Mr. Bedell is active in legislative efforts to open up the health care system to such treatments. He and his wife, Elinor, formed the National Foundation for Alternative Medicine to investigate alternative treatments world-wide, and where effectiveness can be confirmed, make the information available to the public. Mr. Bedell and his wife divide their time between Spirit Lake, Iowa, and Naples, Florida.