List of Governors of Kansas
The Governor of Kansas is the head of the executive branch of Kansas's state government and the commander-in-chief of the state's military forces. The governor has a duty to enforce state laws, and the power to either approve or veto bills passed by the Kansas Legislature, to convene the legislature at any time, and to grant pardons.
The governor has a four-year term, commencing on the second Monday of January after election. The governor originally had a two-year term; this was changed to four years by a constitutional amendment in 1974. The lieutenant governor is elected at the same time as the governor. When the office of governor becomes vacant for any reason, the lieutenant governor becomes governor for the remainder of the term.
Since becoming a state, Kansas has had 45 governors, including 32 Republicans, 11 Democrats, and 2 Populists. The state's longest-serving governors were Robert Docking, John W. Carlin, and Bill Graves, each of whom served 8 years and 4 days (Docking served four two-year terms; Carlin and Graves each served two four-year terms). The shortest-serving governor was John McCuish, who served only 11 days after the resignation of Fred Hall. The current governor is Republican Sam Brownback, who took office January 10, 2011 and was reelected November 4, 2014.
- The area that became Kansas was part of Louisiana Territory, later renamed Missouri Territory, until 1821, and unorganized until it became its own territory; see List of Governors of Missouri for the period from 1805 to 1821.
- A small part of Kansas was once claimed as part of the Republic of Texas (see List of Presidents of the Republic of Texas, and before that, was part of Mexico (see Spanish governors of New Mexico).
|#||Governor||Party||Took office||Left office|
|1||Andrew Horatio Reeder||Democratic||July 7, 1854||August 16, 1855|
|2||Wilson Shannon||Democratic||September 5, 1855||August 18, 1856|
|3||John W. Geary||Independent||September 9, 1856||March 20, 1857|
|4||Robert J. Walker||Democratic||May 27, 1857||December 15, 1857|
|5||James W. Denver||Democratic||December, 1857||November, 1858|
|6||Samuel Medary||Democratic||December, 1858||December, 1860|
State of Kansas
|#||Governor||Party||Took office||Left office||Lt. Governor||Term||Notes|
|1||Charles L. Robinson||Republican||February 9, 1861||January 12, 1863||Joseph Pomeroy Root||1||[N 1]|
|2||Thomas Carney||Republican||January 12, 1863||January 9, 1865||Thomas Andrew Osborn||2|
|3||Samuel J. Crawford||Republican||January 9, 1865||November 4, 1868||James McGrew||3||[N 2]|
|4||Nehemiah Green||Republican||November 4, 1868||January 11, 1869||None||[N 3]|
|5||James M. Harvey||Republican||January 11, 1869||January 13, 1873||Charles Vernon Eskridge||5|
|Peter Percival Elder||6|
|6||Thomas A. Osborn||Republican||January 13, 1873||January 8, 1877||Elias Sleeper Stover||7|
|Melville J. Salter||8|
|7||George T. Anthony||Republican||January 8, 1877||January 13, 1879||Melville J. Salter||9|
|Lyman U. Humphrey|
|8||John P. St. John||Republican||January 13, 1879||January 8, 1883||Lyman U. Humphrey||10|
|David Wesley Finney||11|
|9||George W. Glick||Democratic||January 8, 1883||January 12, 1885||David Wesley Finney||12|
|10||John A. Martin||Republican||January 12, 1885||January 14, 1889||Alexander Pancoast Riddle||13|
|11||Lyman U. Humphrey||Republican||January 14, 1889||January 8, 1893||Andrew Jackson Felt||15|
|12||Lorenzo D. Lewelling||Populist||January 8, 1893||January 14, 1895||Percy Daniels||17|
|13||Edmund N. Morrill||Republican||January 14, 1895||January 11, 1897||James Armstrong Troutman||18|
|14||John W. Leedy||Populist||January 11, 1897||January 9, 1899||Alexander Miller Harvey||19|
|15||William E. Stanley||Republican||January 9, 1899||January 12, 1903||Harry E. Richter||20|
|16||Willis J. Bailey||Republican||January 12, 1903||January 9, 1905||David John Hanna||22|
|17||Edward W. Hoch||Republican||January 9, 1905||January 11, 1909||David John Hanna||23|
|William James Fitzgerald||24|
|18||Walter R. Stubbs||Republican||January 11, 1909||January 13, 1913||William James Fitzgerald||25|
|Richard Joseph Hopkins||26|
|19||George H. Hodges||Democratic||January 13, 1913||January 11, 1915||Sheffield Ingalls||27|
|20||Arthur Capper||Republican||January 11, 1915||January 13, 1919||William Yoast Morgan||28|
|21||Henry J. Allen||Republican||January 13, 1919||January 8, 1923||Charles Solomon Huffman||30|
|22||Jonathan M. Davis||Democratic||January 8, 1923||January 12, 1925||Ben Sanford Paulen||32|
|23||Ben S. Paulen||Republican||January 12, 1925||January 14, 1929||De Lanson Alson Newton Chase||33|
|24||Clyde M. Reed||Republican||January 14, 1929||January 12, 1931||Jacob W. Graybill||35|
|25||Harry H. Woodring||Democratic||January 12, 1931||January 9, 1933||Jacob W. Graybill||36|
|26||Alfred M. Landon||Republican||January 9, 1933||January 11, 1937||Charles W. Thompson||37|
|27||Walter A. Huxman||Democratic||January 11, 1937||January 9, 1939||William M. Lindsay||39|
|28||Payne Ratner||Republican||January 9, 1939||January 11, 1943||Carl E. Friend||40|
|29||Andrew F. Schoeppel||Republican||January 11, 1943||January 13, 1947||Jess C. Denious||42|
|30||Frank Carlson||Republican||January 13, 1947||November 28, 1950||Frank L. Hagaman||44||[N 4]|
|31||Frank L. Hagaman||Republican||November 28, 1950||January 8, 1951||None||[N 3]|
|32||Edward F. Arn||Republican||January 8, 1951||January 10, 1955||Fred Hall||46|
|33||Fred Hall||Republican||January 10, 1955||January 3, 1957||John McCuish||48||[N 5]|
|34||John McCuish||Republican||January 3, 1957||January 14, 1957||None||[N 3]|
|35||George Docking||Democratic||January 14, 1957||January 9, 1961||Joseph W. Henkle, Sr.||49|
|36||John Anderson, Jr.||Republican||January 9, 1961||January 11, 1965||Harold H. Chase||51|
|37||William H. Avery||Republican||January 11, 1965||January 9, 1967||John Crutcher||53|
|38||Robert Docking||Democratic||January 9, 1967||January 13, 1975||John Crutcher||54|
|James H. DeCoursey, Jr.||55|
|39||Robert F. Bennett||Republican||January 13, 1975||January 8, 1979||Shelby Smith||58|
|40||John W. Carlin||Democratic||January 8, 1979||January 12, 1987||Paul V. Dugan||59|
|Thomas R. Docking||60|
|41||Mike Hayden||Republican||January 12, 1987||January 14, 1991||Jack D. Walker||61|
|42||Joan Finney||Democratic||January 14, 1991||January 9, 1995||James Francisco||62|
|43||Bill Graves||Republican||January 9, 1995||January 13, 2003||Sheila Frahm||63|
|44||Kathleen Sebelius||Democratic||January 13, 2003||April 28, 2009||John E. Moore||65||[N 6]|
|45||Mark Parkinson||Democratic||April 28, 2009||January 10, 2011||Troy Findley||[N 3]|
|46||Sam Brownback||Republican||January 10, 2011||Incumbent||Jeff Colyer||67||[N 7]|
Other high offices held
This is a table of congressional seats, other federal offices, and other governorships held by governors. All representatives and senators mentioned represented Kansas except where noted. * denotes those offices which the governor resigned to take.
Living former governors
As of September 2014[update], five former governors of Kansas remain alive, the oldest being John W. Carlin (1979-1987, born 1940). The most recent governor to die was John Anderson Jr. (1961-1965), on September 15, 2014. The most recently serving governor to die was Joan Finney, who left office on January 9, 1995 and died on July 28, 2001 at the age of 76.
|Governor||Gubernatorial term||Date of birth|
|John W. Carlin||1979–1987||August 3, 1940|
|Mike Hayden||1987–1991||March 16, 1944|
|Bill Graves||1995–2003||January 9, 1953|
|Kathleen Sebelius||2003–2009||May 15, 1948|
|Mark Parkinson||2009–2011||June 24, 1957|
- Impeached but not convicted or removed.
- Resigned to take command of the 19th Kansas Infantry.
- As lieutenant governor, filled unexpired term.
- Resigned to take an elected seat in the United States Senate.
- Resigned with 11 days left in his term, and the first act of his successor was to appoint him to the Kansas Supreme Court.
- Resigned to become United States Secretary of Health and Human Services.
- Governor Brownback's second term expires on January 14, 2019; he is term limited.
- "Constitution of the State of Kansas" (1859). State Library of Kansas. Retrieved September 7, 2009.
- KS Const. art. I, § 3.
- KS Const. art. VIII, § 4.
- KS Const. art. II, § 14.
- KS Const. art. I, § 5.
- KS Const. art. I, § 7.
- KS Const. art. I, § 1.
- KS Const. art. I, § 11.
- Office of the Governor for the state of Kansas