List of Governors of Kansas

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Standard of the Governor of Kansas

The Governor of Kansas is the head of the executive branch of Kansas's government[1] and the commander-in-chief of the state's military forces.[2] The governor has a duty to enforce state laws,[1] and the power to either approve or veto bills passed by the Kansas Legislature,[3] to convene the legislature at any time,[4] and to grant pardons.[5]

The governor has a four-year term, commencing on the second Monday of January after election.[6] 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.[6] When the office of governor becomes vacant for any reason, the lieutenant governor becomes governor for the remainder of the term.[7]

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.

Governors[edit]

Territorial governors[edit]

      Democratic       Independent

# Name 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[edit]

      Democratic       Populist       Republican

# Name 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]
  Nehemiah Green 4
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
14
11   Lyman U. Humphrey Republican January 14, 1889 January 8, 1893   Andrew Jackson Felt 15
16
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
21
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
29
21   Henry J. Allen Republican January 13, 1919 January 8, 1923   Charles Solomon Huffman 30
31
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
34
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
38
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
41
29   Andrew F. Schoeppel Republican January 11, 1943 January 13, 1947   Jess C. Denious 42
43
30   Frank Carlson Republican January 13, 1947 November 28, 1950   Frank L. Hagaman 44 [N 4]
45
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
47
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
50
36   John Anderson, Jr. Republican January 9, 1961 January 11, 1965   Harold H. Chase 51
52
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
  Reynolds Shultz 56
  Dave Owen 57
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
  Gary Sherrer
64
44   Kathleen Sebelius Democratic January 13, 2003 April 28, 2009   John E. Moore 65 [N 6]
  Mark Parkinson 66
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[edit]

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.

Name Gubernatorial term U.S. Congress Other offices held
House Senate
Wilson Shannon 1855–1856 (territorial) U.S. Representative from Ohio, Governor of Ohio, Ambassador to Mexico
John W. Geary 1856–1857 (territorial) Governor of Pennsylvania
Robert J. Walker 1857 (territorial) U.S. Senator from Mississippi, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury
James W. Denver 1857–1858 (territorial) Secretary of State of California, U.S. Representative from California
Samuel Medary 1858–1860 (territorial) Governor of Minnesota Territory
Frederick Perry Stanton 1857 (acting territorial) U.S. Representative from Tennessee
James M. Harvey 1869–1873 S
Edmund Needham Morrill 1895–1897 H
Willis Joshua Bailey 1903–1905 H
Arthur Capper 1915–1919 S
Henry Justin Allen 1919–1923 S
Clyde M. Reed 1929–1931 S
Harry H. Woodring 1931–1933 U.S. Secretary of War
Walter A. Huxman 1937–1939 Tenth Circuit Court Judge
Andrew F. Schoeppel 1943–1947 S
Frank Carlson 1947–1950 H S*
William H. Avery 1965–1967 H
Kathleen Sebelius 2003–2009 Secretary of Health and Human Services*
Sam Brownback 2011–present H S

Living former governors[edit]

As of January 2011, six former governors were alive, the oldest being John Anderson, Jr. (1961–1965, born 1917). The most recent governor to die was William H. Avery (1965–1967), on November 4, 2009. The most recently serving governor to die was Robert Frederick Bennett, who left office on January 8, 1979 and died on October 9, 2000 at the age of 73.

Name Gubernatorial term Date of birth
John Anderson, Jr. 1961–1965 (1917-05-08) May 8, 1917 (age 97)
John W. Carlin 1979–1987 (1940-08-03) August 3, 1940 (age 73)
Mike Hayden 1987–1991 (1944-03-16) March 16, 1944 (age 70)
Bill Graves 1995–2003 (1953-01-09) January 9, 1953 (age 61)
Kathleen Sebelius 2003–2009 (1948-05-15) May 15, 1948 (age 66)
Mark Parkinson 2009–2011 (1957-06-24) June 24, 1957 (age 57)

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Impeached but not convicted or removed.
  2. ^ Resigned to take command of the 19th Kansas Infantry.
  3. ^ a b c d As lieutenant governor, filled unexpired term.
  4. ^ Resigned to take an elected seat in the United States Senate.
  5. ^ Resigned with 11 days left in his term, and the first act of his successor was to appoint him to the Kansas Supreme Court.
  6. ^ Resigned to become United States Secretary of Health and Human Services.
  7. ^ Governor Brownback's first term expires on January 12, 2015; he is not yet term limited.

References[edit]

General
Constitutions
Specific
  1. ^ a b KS Const. art. I, § 3.
  2. ^ KS Const. art. VIII, § 4.
  3. ^ KS Const. art. II, § 14.
  4. ^ KS Const. art. I, § 5.
  5. ^ KS Const. art. I, § 7.
  6. ^ a b KS Const. art. I, § 1.
  7. ^ KS Const. art. I, § 11.

External links[edit]