Bev Perdue

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Bev Perdue
73rd Governor of North Carolina
In office
January 10, 2009 – January 5, 2013
LieutenantWalter Dalton
Preceded byMike Easley
Succeeded byPat McCrory
32nd Lieutenant Governor of North Carolina
In office
January 6, 2001 – January 10, 2009
GovernorMike Easley
Preceded byDennis Wicker
Succeeded byWalter Dalton
Member of the North Carolina Senate
from the 3rd district
In office
January 3, 1991 – January 3, 2001
Preceded byBill Barker
Succeeded byScott Thomas
Member of the North Carolina House of Representatives
from the 3rd district
In office
Preceded byChris S. Barker, Jr.
Succeeded byWilliam L. Wainwright
Personal details
Beverly Marlene Moore

(1947-01-14) January 14, 1947 (age 77)
Grundy, Virginia, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Gary Perdue
(m. 1970; div. 1994)
Bob Eaves
(m. 1997)
EducationUniversity of Kentucky (BA)
University of Florida (MEd, PhD)

Beverly Eaves Perdue[1] (born Beverly Marlene Moore; January 14, 1947)[2] is an American businesswoman, politician, and member of the Democratic Party who served as the 73rd governor of North Carolina from 2009 to 2013. She was the first female governor of North Carolina.

Perdue started her political career in the 1980s, serving in the North Carolina House of Representatives. She then served five terms in the North Carolina Senate, before she was elected as the 32nd Lieutenant Governor of North Carolina. Perdue was elected to the office of Governor of North Carolina in 2008 against Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory by a 50–46 margin.

On January 26, 2012, facing sinking approval ratings, Perdue announced that she would not seek reelection in the 2012 gubernatorial election.[3] She left office in January 2013.

Early life and education[edit]

Beverly Marlene Moore[4] was born in 1947 in Grundy, Virginia, the daughter of Alfred P. and Irene Morefield Moore.[4] Her father was a coal miner and co-founder of a coal mining company, who went on to become CEO of a large utility company.[5] She earned a B.A. degree in history in 1969 from the University of Kentucky, where she was a member of Kappa Kappa Gamma, as well as a M.Ed. degree in community college administration in 1974 and a Ph.D., degree in Education Administration in 1976, both from the University of Florida.[6]

North Carolina legislature[edit]

Perdue, a Democrat, served in the North Carolina House of Representatives from 1987 to 1991, and in the North Carolina Senate from 1991 to 2001. She represented Craven, Lenoir and Pamlico counties in the House and Craven, Carteret and Pamlico in the Senate.[7]


In 1990, she ran for the State Senate in North Carolina's 3rd Senate District, vacated by retiring State Senator Bill Barker (D-Pamlico County).[8] In 1996, she won re-election against Republican Holt Faircloth, Carteret County Commissioner, 60%-40%.[9][10][11] In 1998, she won re-election against Republican George Hipps 60%-40%.[12]


During her last three terms in the Senate, she served as co-chair of the Appropriations Committee[13][14] While she was in office, the General Assembly increased teacher pay and passed Governor Hunt's Excellent Schools Act and Smart Start. Additionally, she led the debate that created North Carolina's Clean Water Management Trust Fund.[5] She fought for more benefits for senior citizens.[15]

Committee assignments[edit]

She served in the House Judiciary Committee.[16] She was Chairwoman of the Senate Education Committee.[17]

Lieutenant governor[edit]

Perdue being sworn in during 2005

In 2000, she defeated Republican Betsy Cochrane for the lieutenant governor's seat, becoming North Carolina's first female lieutenant governor; she was re-elected in 2004.[5] As lieutenant governor, Perdue's most significant act was casting the tie-breaking vote that established the North Carolina Education Lottery.[5]

2008 gubernatorial election[edit]

Perdue announced her 2008 candidacy for governor on October 1, 2007, at her hometown, New Bern, North Carolina. On October 22, 2007, pro-choice Emily's List endorsed her campaign.[18][19] On May 6, 2008, Perdue won the Democratic nomination for governor, defeating State Treasurer Richard H. Moore and Dennis Nielsen.[20]

Perdue raised $15 million for the general election and ran ads against her Republican opponent, Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory, criticizing him for not being tough enough on illegal immigration.[21] Her 2008 gubernatorial campaign was under both state and federal investigation for donation irregularities and was fined $30,000 in 2010.[22] Despite a national Democratic tide and Perdue's fundraising edge,[23] in the general election campaign McCrory led Perdue at first; Perdue slowly gained as the Democratic candidate.[24] Perdue and McCrory remained close, with the two often polling in a statistical tie[23] in what was the closest race for governor in the nation.[21] Perdue ran slightly behind her opponent in polls released the week before the election.[23] Pundits speculated that Perdue was hurt by current Democratic Governor Mike Easley's decreasing popularity and McCrory's efforts to tag her as part of the Political corruption in Raleigh: consultants mentioned Perdue's "difficulty of being the candidate of continuity in a change election."[24]

While McCrory received the endorsement of most major newspapers in the state (which typically endorse Democrats),[25][26][27][28][29][30] Perdue received the endorsement of actor and director Andy Griffith, who filmed a campaign ad on her behalf.[31]

Perdue defeated McCrory on November 4, 2008, 50.3% to 46.9%.[32]

Late reporting fine[edit]

In late 2010, Perdue's 2008 campaign came under State and Federal investigation for the late reporting of 41 private flights.[33] The campaign was fined $30,000 in August 2010 by the State Board of Elections for the late reporting of flights which were discovered after a 2009 self-audit, but that body declined to investigate further after deciding that the Perdue Campaign did not intentionally violate the law.[22]

Governor of North Carolina[edit]

Perdue was sworn in as the 73rd Governor of North Carolina on January 10, 2009.[34]

Political positions

Perdue's Senate record followed the lines of the Democratic caucus.[5] As a member of the Board of Community Colleges, she voted against allowing illegal immigrants to attend the schools even if they graduated from a North Carolina high school.[5] She had previously said she would admit every high school graduate to community college tuition-free.[5] In late February and early March 2009, she announced that $93 million from the educational lottery would be used to ensure there is money available for the state's day-to-day operations.[35]

In her first use of the veto power, Gov. Perdue vetoed a bill that would have made various documents that lawmakers use in drafting legislation confidential.[36]

She also vetoed a bill that would have required voters to show photo ID before casting their ballots.

She vetoed a bill that would have allowed fracking in North Carolina. The veto was overridden in July 2012.[37]

Perdue signed Susie's Law in 2010, which authorizes up to ten months in jail for convicted perpetrators of cruelty to animals.[38]

Remarks about suspending Congressional elections

On September 27, 2011, Perdue introduced the idea of suspending the Congressional elections. She told the Cary Rotary Club, "You have to have more ability from Congress, I think, to work together and to get over the partisan bickering and focus on fixing things. I think we ought to suspend, perhaps, elections for Congress for two years and just tell them we won't hold it against them, whatever decisions they make, to just let them help this country recover. I really hope that someone can agree with me on that. The one good thing about Raleigh is that for so many years we worked across party lines. It's a little bit more contentious now but it's not impossible to try to do what's right in this state. You want people who don't worry about the next election." Her press secretary later claimed that the statement was intended as a joke.[39] Audio of the speech was subsequently released.[40]

Hurricane Irene

Governor Perdue oversaw the state's preparation and response to Hurricane Irene in 2011[41] It was seen by some political observers as a defining moment of her tenure.[42]

Eugenics compensation

Gov. Perdue issued the following statement regarding the final recommendations approved by the Governor's Task Force on Eugenics Compensation:

"Thank you to the devoted members of this task force for months of diligent, careful and thoughtful work to address one of the most difficult and emotionally wrenching issues in our state's history.

While no amount of money will ever make up for the fact that government officials deprived North Carolinians, mostly women, of the possibility of having children—and officials did so, in most cases, without the victims' consent or against their will—we must do something. I support the task force's compensation proposal. I also agree that we should establish a permanent exhibit so that this shameful period is never forgotten. I look forward to reviewing the details of the task force's recommendations."[43]

North Carolina's Republican controlled Senate removed such compensation for sterilization victims from the state's budget that the General Assembly passed after overriding the Governor's veto.[44]

Funding education

Gov. Bev Perdue called on the General Assembly to temporarily restore a fraction of a penny to the state sales tax to reverse deep and unnecessary cuts to education.[45]

Pre-K expansion

North Carolina Governor Bev Perdue issued Executive Order No. 128 authorizing the expansion of the NC Pre-K program to serve up to 6,300 additional children by January 1, 2013. An estimated 1,000 of those children can begin to be served immediately in Pre-K classrooms across the state.

"Through good economic times and bad, North Carolina's enduring commitment has been to educate our children. Now more than ever, as we sit poised for an economic recovery, any delay in preparing our kids to be tomorrow's workforce is simply unacceptable," Gov. Perdue said. "After the General Assembly cut early education programs by 20 percent, thousands of our youngest students were cut out of the Pre-K classroom. Today we can welcome many of them in."[46]

Wilmington 10

Governor Perdue granted full pardons of innocence to the Wilmington 10 on December 31, 2012. "These convictions were tainted by naked racism and represent an ugly stain on North Carolina's criminal justice system that cannot be allowed to stand any longer," said Gov. Beverly Perdue. "Justice demands that this stain finally be removed." Perdue said that among the key evidence that led her to grant pardons of innocence were recently discovered notes from the prosecutor who picked the jury. The notes showed the prosecutor preferred white jurors who might be members of the Ku Klux Klan and one black juror was described as an "Uncle Tom type." Perdue also pointed to the federal court's ruling that the prosecutor knew his star witness lied on the witness stand. That witness and other witnesses recanted a few years after the trial.[47]

Personal life[edit]

She is an Episcopalian.[4][6] Before entering public service, Perdue worked as a public school teacher, as director of geriatric services at a community hospital in her hometown of New Bern, and earned a Ph.D. in Education Administration.[48]

Perdue lives in New Bern. She has been married to Bob Eaves since 1997 and has two grown sons, Garrett (b. 1976) and Emmett (b. 1979), from her previous marriage to Gary Perdue, which lasted from 1970 to 1994.[4] She continues to use "Perdue" as her last name, using her current married name as her middle name.


In Spring 2013, she served as a Resident Fellow at the Harvard Institute of Politics.[49] Following her Harvard fellowship, she started an education consulting business.[50]

In August 2013, Perdue became a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at Duke University's Sanford School of Public Policy, where she worked with faculty and students and also served as an adviser for Duke's Center for Child and Family Policy.[51]

Perdue was named to the Governing Board of the National Assessment of Educational Progress in 2017 and re-appointed in 2021. She became the board's first female chair in 2018 and was re-elected to the chair for a second time in 2021.[52]

Electoral history[edit]

North Carolina gubernatorial election, 2008
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic Beverly Perdue 2,146,083 50.27%
Republican Pat McCrory 2,001,114 46.88%
Libertarian Michael Munger 121,585 2.85%
North Carolina gubernatorial Democratic primary, 2008
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic Beverly Perdue 840,342 56.21%
Democratic Richard H. Moore 594.028 39.23%
Democratic Dennis Nielsen 60.628 4.06%
North Carolina Lieutenant governor election, 2004
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic Beverly Perdue 1,888,397 56.6%
Republican Jim Snyder 1,453,705 42.8%
Libertarian Christopher Cole 56,368 1.7%
North Carolina Lieutenant governor election, 2000
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic Beverly Perdue 1,500,206 52%
Republican Betsy Cochrane 1,315,825 46%
Reform Catherine Carter 50,352 2%
North Carolina Lieutenant governor Democratic primary election, 2000
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic Beverly Perdue 329,183 64.1%
Democratic Ed Wilson 103,847 20.2%
Democratic Ronnie Ansley 55,622 10.8%
Democratic Joel Harbinson 25,179 4.9%
North Carolina state Senate district 3 election, 1998
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic Beverly Perdue 24,767 60.1%
Republican David G. Hipps 16,414 39.9%

All data is from the State Board of Elections.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Washington Post Archived October 1, 2008, at the Wayback Machine and State letterhead Archived March 5, 2012, at the Wayback Machine indicate that she places her second husband's surname, Eaves, before her first husband's surname, Perdue.
  2. ^ "Perdue's change of birthdate". News & Observer. Archived from the original on October 23, 2008.
  3. ^ Catanese, David (January 26, 2012). "Bev Perdue will not seek reelection". Politico.
  4. ^ a b c d Teague Beckwith, Ryan; Jones, Denise (2007-03-26). Beverly Perdue. Archived October 29, 2008, at the Wayback Machine The News & Observer. Retrieved on 2008-11-05.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g "Looking for real reform in the governor's race". Independent Weekly. October 15, 2008. Archived from the original on November 23, 2008. Retrieved November 25, 2008.
  6. ^ a b Beverly Perdue Archived October 29, 2008, at the Wayback Machine. News & Observer. March 3, 2007. Retrieved June 27, 2011.
  7. ^ Lori Ann Harris and Marianne M. Kersey, Article II: A Guide to the 1987-1988 N. C. Legislature, N. C. Center for Public Policy Research, Theo Davis & Sons, Zebulon, NC, 1988, p. 168; Kim Kebshull, Article II: A Guide to the 1991-1992 N. C. Legislature, N. C. Center for Public Policy Research, Theo Davis & Sons, Zebulon, NC, 1991, p. 47.
  8. ^ "Surprises Are Few As Hundreds File For Legislative Seats". The Dispatch. February 6, 1990. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
  9. ^ "North Carolina Senate General Election" (PDF). NC State Bureau of Elections. November 5, 1996. Retrieved June 18, 2013.[permanent dead link]
  10. ^ Book, Sue (January 11, 2006). "Potential candidates begin eyeing Thomas' Senate seat". New Bern Sun Journal. Archived from the original on September 5, 2012. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
  11. ^ "William Holt Faircloth, Jr". Retrieved May 20, 2012.
  12. ^ "North Carolina Senate General Election" (PDF). NC State Bureau of Elections. November 24, 1998. Retrieved June 18, 2013.[permanent dead link]
  13. ^ Perdue and was the first woman to hold this position.
  14. ^ Legacy
  15. ^ "Give back the cash; retirees tell N.C." Star-News. December 9, 1994. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
  16. ^ "Committee continues debate on amendment for governor's veto". The Robesonian. July 14, 1989. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
  17. ^ "New Education Reforms On Hold". News & Record. February 7, 1993. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
  18. ^ Perdue campaign press release Archived October 8, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  19. ^ "Emily's List". Archived from the original on May 9, 2008.
  20. ^ "State Board of Elections". Retrieved May 20, 2012.
  21. ^ a b Romoser, James (November 5, 2008). "Perdue, in a first, edges McCrory". Winston-Salem Journal. Retrieved November 25, 2008. [dead link]
  22. ^ a b Robertson, Gary D. (August 25, 2010). "N.C. Governor Perdue's campaign fined on flight reporting errors". StarNews. Archived from the original on September 27, 2012. Retrieved 2013-06-18.
  23. ^ a b c Johnson, Mark; Benjamin Niolet (November 2, 2008). "Race for Governor Remains Close". The News & Observer. Archived from the original on January 4, 2009. Retrieved November 24, 2008.
  24. ^ a b "Is the Southern Strategy Dead?". American Prospect. October 24, 2008. Archived from the original on August 10, 2011. Retrieved October 26, 2008.
  25. ^ "McCrory visits Chapel Hill". Daily Tar Heel. October 30, 2008. Retrieved November 25, 2008.[permanent dead link]
  26. ^ "McCrory's time". The News & Observer (Editorial). Raleigh, N.C. October 26, 2008. Archived from the original on October 29, 2008. Retrieved October 27, 2008.
  27. ^ "We recommend McCrory for governor". The Charlotte Observer. October 5, 2008. Archived from the original on July 22, 2012. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
  28. ^ "Editorial endorsement: McCrory for governor". News & Record. October 10, 2008. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
  29. ^ "Election '08: Governor". October 12, 2008. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
  30. ^ "McCrory for governor: Charlotte mayor would bring fresh and innovative leadership to Raleigh". Daily Tar Heel. October 26, 2008. Retrieved October 28, 2008.[permanent dead link]
  31. ^ "Perdue's Mayberry Miracle". News & Observer. April 23, 2008. Archived from the original on July 20, 2008. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
  32. ^ Robertson, Gary (November 4, 2008). "Democrat Perdue becomes NC's 1st female governor". Associated Press. Retrieved November 4, 2008.
  33. ^ "Federal investigation still looms for Perdue". WRAL. November 24, 2010. Retrieved February 1, 2014.
  34. ^ Bonner, Lynn; Niolet, Benjamin (January 10, 2009). "Council of State also sworn in today: These four among those who will help the new governor steer the ship of state". The News & Observer.
  35. ^ Shea, James (April 14, 2009). "Perdue getting backlash from use of lottery funds". Times-News. Hendersonville, North Carolina. Retrieved April 1, 2016.
  36. ^ "Perdue veto kills confidentiality bill". News & Observer.
  37. ^ Seaton, Jake (July 2, 2012), NC lawmakers override Perdue's veto of fracking bill[permanent dead link] WNCN News
  38. ^ "Susie, abused dog that inspired NC law, nominated for award". June 24, 2014. Retrieved August 10, 2014.
  39. ^ "Perdue jokes about suspending Congressional elections for two years". News & Observer. September 27, 2011. Archived from the original on September 28, 2011.
  40. ^ "Was Perdue joking? You decide. Listen here". News & Observer. September 28, 2011. Archived from the original on January 1, 2012. Retrieved 2012-05-20.
  41. ^ "Perdue requests more federal aid after Hurricane Irene". ABC News. August 29, 2011. Archived from the original on October 25, 2012. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
  42. ^ Catanese, David. "Hurricane Irene in North Carolina a big moment for Bev Perdue". Politico. Retrieved May 20, 2012.
  43. ^ "Gov. Perdue's Statement on Eugenics Task Force Recommendations". Office of Governor Bev Perdue (Press release). Archived from the original on September 18, 2012. Retrieved November 1, 2012.
  44. ^ Price, Mark (June 22, 2012). "Eugenics victims vow to keep fighting for compensation after N.C. Senate nixes budget item". Charlotte Observer. Archived from the original on January 19, 2013. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
  45. ^ "Governor Perdue's Video Message: A Fraction of a Penny for Progress". North Carolina Democratic Party. January 20, 2012. Archived from the original on February 29, 2012. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
  46. ^ "Gov. Perdue Funds Pre-K Expansion to Cover Up to 6,300 Additional Children". Office of the Governor (Press release). October 18, 2012. Retrieved November 1, 2012 – via North Carolina Digital Collections.
  47. ^ Almasy, Steve (January 1, 2013). "North Carolina governor pardons 'Wilmington 10'". CNN. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
  48. ^ Biography; North Carolina Governor profile
  49. ^ "Beverly Perdue". The Institute of Politics at Harvard University. Spring 2013. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
  50. ^ "Under the Dome: Perdue sets post-governor plans, mum on Raleigh GOP". News & Observer. June 17, 2013. Archived from the original on June 17, 2013. Retrieved June 18, 2013.
  51. ^ "Visiting fellow, former N.C. Gov. Bev Perdue tours Duke campus | the …". Archived from the original on August 29, 2013.
  52. ^ Associated Press: Former NC Gov. Perdue back leading national testing board

External links[edit]

North Carolina House of Representatives
Preceded by
Chris Barker
Member of the North Carolina House of Representatives
from the 3rd district

Succeeded by
North Carolina Senate
Preceded by
Bill Barker
Member of the North Carolina Senate
from the 3rd district

Succeeded by
Political offices
Preceded by Lieutenant Governor of North Carolina
Succeeded by
Preceded by Governor of North Carolina
Succeeded by
Party political offices
Preceded by Democratic nominee for Governor of North Carolina
Succeeded by
U.S. order of precedence (ceremonial)
Preceded byas Former Governor Order of precedence of the United States Succeeded byas Former Governor