LUBBOCK, Texas — Former representative Charles “Charlie” Stenholm passed away on Wednesday. He was 84 years old.

Stenholm, a Texas Tech University graduate, worked in the United States House of Representatives representing Texas’s 17th congressional district from 1975 to 2005. The Democrat was a driving force in agricultural policy.

Lubbock congressman Jodey Arrington said in a statement, “With his broad smile and West Texas humility, Charlie Stenholm did a lot of great things for the place and people he loved. Known simply as ‘Charlie,’ this cotton farmer from Stamford, deeply devoted to family and the land, typified the citizen legislator our founders envisioned. Anne and I deeply mourn his passing.”