Women in Statewide Elective Executive Office 2021
Eight women (5D, 3R) serve as governors in 2021. In addition, one woman serves as governor in the U.S. Territories: Lou Leon Guerroro in Guam.
Kate Brown, an Oregon Democrat, became governor in 2015 after the elected governor resigned. She served as secretary of state from 2009 until she became governor. She served in the Oregon House of Representatives and Oregon State Senate, becoming senate majority leader.
Kay Ivey, an Alabama Republican, was lieutenant governor and became governor when the elected governor resigned. She was elected state treasurer in 2002 and re-elected in 2006; she won office as lieutenant governor in 2010 and was re-elected in 2014.
Laura Kelly, a Kansas Democrat, was elected to an open seat in 2018. She served as a Kansas State Senator from 2005 until she became governor.
Michelle Lujan Grisham, a New Mexico Democrat, was elected to an open seat in 2018. She served as U.S. Representative from 2013 until she became governor. From 2004-2007 she was the New Mexico Secretary of Health.
Janet Mills, Maine Democrat, was elected to an open seat to become the state’s first woman governor in 2018. She served as Attorney General of Maine from 2009 to 2011 and then 2013 until she became governor.
Kristi Noem, a South Dakota Republican, was elected to an open seat to become the state’s first woman governor in 2018. She served as U.S. Representative from 2011 until she became governor. From 2007-2011 she served in the South Dakota House of Representatives.
Kim Reynolds, an Iowa Republican, was appointed governor in 2017 when the incumbent left office to serve as U.S. Ambassador to China. In 2018, she became the first woman elected as governor in Iowa. She served as lieutenant governor from 2011 until becoming governor. Prior to her election as lieutenant governor, she served in the Iowa State Senate and as Clarke County treasurer.
Gretchen Whitmer, a Michigan Democrat, won an open seat in 2018. She served in the Michigan House of Representatives and Michigan State Senate, becoming senate minority leader.
women (26D, 18R) have served as governors in 30 states.
In addition, two women have served as governor in Puerto Rico and one has served as governor in Guam. Arizona is the first state where a woman succeeded another woman as governor, and the first state to have had four women governors. Of the 44 women governors, 30 were first elected in their own right; 3 replaced their husbands, and 11 became governor by constitutional succession, six of whom subsequently won full terms. The record number of women serving simultaneously, achieved in 2004, 2007, 2019, and 2021, is 9.
|ID||Janice K. McGeachin||R|
* Elected independent of the governor.
** The Democratic-Farmer-Labor (DFL) Party is the state's Democratic Party.
(note: title varies from state to state)
*NP = non-partisan