Bachelor of Business Administration, University Tennessee, Knoxville, 1966. Juris Doctor, University Tennessee School Law, 1968.
Member District 77 Tennessee House of Representatives, 1976-1988. Member United States Congress from 8th Tennessee District, 1989—2011, United States House National Security Committee, 1989—1997, United States House Science & Technology Committee, 1989—1997, United States House Ways & Means Committee, 1997—2011. Vice chairman Prime Policy Group, Washington, since 2011.
Co-founder Blue Dog Democrats, 1995—2011. President North Atlantic Treaty Organization Parliamentary Assembly, 2008—2010. Lieutenant United States Navy, 1968-1972, colonel Tennessee Army National Guard, 1974—2000.
Former member board visitors United States Military Academy, United States Air Force Academy. Board visitors United States Naval Academy. Active volunteer Obion County Cancer Society.
Member of Obion County Bar Association, Obion County Chamber of C., Rotary Club.
Married Betty Ann Portis, September 2, 1967. Children: Elizabeth Tanner Atkins, John Portis.