List of Governors of California

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Jerry Brown, 34th and the current 39th Governor of California

The Governor of California is the chief executive of the California state government, whose responsibilities include making annual State of the State addresses to the California State Legislature, submitting the budget, and ensuring that state laws are enforced.

There have been 39 governors; many have been influential nationwide in areas far-flung from politics. Leland Stanford founded Stanford University in 1891. Earl Warren, later Chief Justice of the United States, won an election with the nominations of the three major parties – the only person ever to run essentially unopposed for governor of California. Ronald Reagan, who was president of the Screen Actors Guild and later President of the United States, and Arnold Schwarzenegger both came to prominence through acting. Gray Davis was the first governor of California, and second governor in American history, to be recalled by voters. The longest term was Earl Warren's, who was elected three times and served nearly ten years. The shortest term was that of Milton Latham, who served only five days before being elected by the legislature to fill a vacant United States Senate seat. The current governor is Edmund Gerald "Jerry" Brown, Jr., who previously served as governor from 1975 to 1983. He is the son of former governor Edmund Gerald "Pat" Brown, Sr. who served from 1959-1967.

Governors[edit]

Peter Hardeman Burnett, first Governor of California
Leland Stanford, eighth Governor of California
Romualdo Pacheco, 12th Governor of California
Hiram Johnson, 23rd Governor of California
Earl Warren, 30th Governor of California, and 14th Chief Justice of the United States
Ronald Reagan, 33rd Governor of California, and 40th President of the United States
Arnold Schwarzenegger, 38th Governor of California
For the governors prior to statehood, see the List of Governors of California before admission.

California was obtained by the United States in the Mexican Cession following the Mexican–American War. Unlike most other states, it was never organized as a territory, and was admitted as the 31st state on September 9, 1850.

The original California Constitution of 1849 called for elections every two years, with no set start date for the term. An amendment ratified in 1862 increased the term to four years,[1] and the 1879 constitution set the term to begin on the first Monday in January following an election. In 1990, Proposition 140 led to a constitutional amendment[2] implementing a term limit of two consecutive terms;[3] prior to this limit, only one governor, Earl Warren, served more than two terms. Jerry Brown was able to be elected to a third term in 2010 because his previous terms were before the term limit was enacted. The 1849 constitution also created the office of lieutenant governor, who, in cases of vacancy in the office of governor, becomes governor.[4] The governor and lieutenant governor are not elected on the same ticket.

      Democratic (16)[a]       American (1)       Republican (22)[b]       Progressive (1)[b]

#[c]GovernorTerm startTerm endPartyLt. Governor[d]Terms[e]
1 Peter Hardeman BurnettDecember 20, 1849January 9, 1851Democratic John McDougall12[f][g]
2John McDougallJanuary 9, 1851January 8, 1852DemocraticDavid C. Broderick[h]12[i]
3John BiglerJanuary 8, 1852January 9, 1856DemocraticSamuel Purdy2
4J. Neely JohnsonJanuary 9, 1856January 8, 1858AmericanRobert M. Anderson1
5John B. WellerJanuary 8, 1858January 9, 1860DemocraticJohn Walkup1
6Milton LathamJanuary 9, 1860January 14, 1860Lecompton DemocraticJohn G. Downey12[j]
7John G. DowneyJanuary 14, 1860January 10, 1862Lecompton DemocraticIsaac N. Quinn[h]12[i]
Pablo de la Guerra[k]
8Leland StanfordJanuary 10, 1862December 10, 1863RepublicanJohn F. Chellis1
9Frederick LowDecember 10, 1863December 5, 1867Unionist RepublicanTim N. Machin1[l]
10Henry Huntly HaightDecember 5, 1867December 8, 1871DemocraticWilliam Holden1
11Newton BoothDecember 8, 1871February 27, 1875RepublicanRomualdo Pacheco12[j]
12Romualdo PachecoFebruary 27, 1875December 9, 1875RepublicanWilliam Irwin[h][m]12[i]
13William IrwinDecember 9, 1875January 8, 1880DemocraticJames A. Johnson1
14George Clement PerkinsJanuary 8, 1880January 10, 1883RepublicanJohn Mansfield1
15George StonemanJanuary 10, 1883January 8, 1887DemocraticJohn Daggett1
16Washington BartlettJanuary 8, 1887September 12, 1887DemocraticRobert Waterman[n]12[o]
17Robert WatermanSeptember 12, 1887January 8, 1891RepublicanStephen M. White[p][m]12[i]
18Henry MarkhamJanuary 8, 1891January 11, 1895RepublicanJohn B. Reddick1
19James BuddJanuary 11, 1895January 4, 1899DemocraticSpencer G. Millard[o][n]1
William T. Jeter[q]
20Henry GageJanuary 4, 1899January 6, 1903RepublicanJacob H. Neff1
21George PardeeJanuary 6, 1903January 9, 1907RepublicanAlden Anderson1
22James GillettJanuary 9, 1907January 3, 1911RepublicanWarren R. Porter1
23Hiram JohnsonJanuary 3, 1911March 15, 1917RepublicanA. J. Wallace1 12[j][r]
ProgressiveJohn M. Eshleman[o]
William Stephens[q][n]
24William StephensMarch 15, 1917January 9, 1923Republicanvacant1 12[s]
Clement C. Young
25Friend RichardsonJanuary 9, 1923January 4, 1927RepublicanClement C. Young1
26Clement C. YoungJanuary 4, 1927January 6, 1931RepublicanBuron Fitts[t]1
H. L. Carnahan[q]
27James Rolph Jr.January 6, 1931June 2, 1934RepublicanFrank Merriam12[o]
28Frank MerriamJune 2, 1934January 2, 1939Republicanvacant1 12[s]
George J. Hatfield
29Culbert OlsonJanuary 2, 1939January 4, 1943DemocraticEllis E. Patterson1
30Earl WarrenJanuary 4, 1943October 5, 1953Republican[u]Frederick F. Houser2 12[v]
Goodwin Jess Knight
31Goodwin Jess KnightOctober 5, 1953January 5, 1959RepublicanHarold J. Powers[w]1 12[s]
32Pat BrownJanuary 5, 1959January 2, 1967DemocraticGlenn M. Anderson2
33Ronald ReaganJanuary 2, 1967January 6, 1975RepublicanRobert Finch[x]2
Edwin Reinecke[q][y]
John L. Harmer[q]
34Jerry BrownJanuary 6, 1975January 3, 1983DemocraticMervyn M. Dymally2
Michael Curb[n]
35George DeukmejianJanuary 3, 1983January 7, 1991RepublicanLeo T. McCarthy[m]2
36Pete WilsonJanuary 7, 1991January 4, 1999RepublicanLeo T. McCarthy[m]2
Gray Davis[m]
37Gray DavisJanuary 4, 1999November 17, 2003DemocraticCruz Bustamante1 12[z]
38Arnold SchwarzeneggerNovember 17, 2003January 3, 2011RepublicanCruz Bustamante[m]1 12[z][aa]
John Garamendi[m]
Abel Maldonado
39Jerry BrownJanuary 3, 2011IncumbentDemocraticAbel Maldonado[ab]1[ac]
Gavin Newsom[ab]

Other high offices held[edit]

Seventeen governors of California have served other high offices, including one President of the United States, a Chief Justice of the United States, and five ambassadors. Thirteen have served in the U.S. Congress, all representing California, though one of them also represented Ohio. Four (marked with *) resigned to take their other office, three in the U.S. Senate and one joining the U.S. Supreme Court. One (marked with †) resigned his seat in the Senate to take office as governor.

All representatives and senators listed represented California except where noted.

GovernorGubernatorial termOther offices heldSource
Bigler, JohnJohn Bigler1852–1856Minister to Chile[13]
Weller, John B.John B. Weller1858–1860Representative from Ohio, Senator, Minister to Mexico[14]
Latham, MiltonMilton Latham1860Representative, Senator*[15]
Stanford, LelandLeland Stanford1862–1863Senator[16]
Low, FrederickFrederick Low1863–1867Representative, Minister to the Great Qing Empire[17]
Booth, NewtonNewton Booth1871–1875Senator*[18]
Pacheco, RomualdoRomualdo Pacheco1875Representative, Minister to Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua[19]
Perkins, George ClementGeorge Clement Perkins1880–1883Senator[20]
Markham, HenryHenry Markham1891–1895Representative[21]
Budd, JamesJames Budd1895–1899Representative[22]
Gage, HenryHenry Gage1899–1903Minister to Portugal[23]
Gillett, JamesJames Gillett1907–1911Representative†[24]
Johnson, HiramHiram Johnson1911–1917Senator*[25]
Stephens, WilliamWilliam Stephens1917–1923Representative[26]
Warren, EarlEarl Warren1943–1953Chief Justice of the United States*[27]
Reagan, RonaldRonald Reagan1967–1975President of the United States[28]
Wilson, PetePete Wilson1991–1999Senator†[29]

Living former governors[edit]

As of October 2013, there are four living former governors of California. The most recent death of a former governor was that of Ronald Reagan (1967–1975), on June 5, 2004.

GovernorTerm of officeDate of birth
George Deukmejian1983–1991(1928-06-06) June 6, 1928 (age 85)
Pete Wilson1991–1999(1933-08-23) August 23, 1933 (age 80)
Gray Davis1999–2003(1942-12-26) December 26, 1942 (age 71)
Arnold Schwarzenegger2003–2011(1947-07-30) July 30, 1947 (age 66)

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Includes one term served by a repeat governor.
  2. ^ a b Includes one partial term served by a governor who also represented another party during this term.
  3. ^ Since Jerry Brown is officially numbered 39th, repeat governors are officially numbered for each distinct term.[5]
  4. ^ Lieutenant governors represented the same party as their governor unless noted.
  5. ^ The fractional terms of some governors are not to be understood absolutely literally; rather, they are meant to show single terms during which multiple governors served, due to resignations, deaths and the like.
  6. ^ A civilian government was formed in late 1849 prior to official statehood, and operated as the state government for ten months before official statehood was granted.[6]
  7. ^ Resigned, citing personal reasons; he was reportedly unhappy with the legislature, and wanted more time to manage his business.[7]
  8. ^ a b c As president of the senate, acted as lieutenant governor.
  9. ^ a b c d As lieutenant governor, filled unexpired term.
  10. ^ a b c Resigned to take an elected seat in the United States Senate.
  11. ^ Elected president of the senate, therefore becoming new acting lieutenant governor.
  12. ^ Low was the first governor elected under the provisions of an 1862 constitutional amendment, increasing terms from two to four years.
  13. ^ a b c d e f g Represented the Democratic Party.
  14. ^ a b c d Represented the Republican Party.
  15. ^ a b c d Died in office.
  16. ^ As president pro tempore of the state senate, acted as lieutenant governor.
  17. ^ a b c d e Appointed by governor to fill the vacancy in the office of lieutenant governor.
  18. ^ Johnson was elected as a Republican for his first term and a Progressive for his second.[8]
  19. ^ a b c As lieutenant governor, filled unexpired term, and was subsequently elected in his own right.
  20. ^ Resigned to be District Attorney for Los Angeles County, California[9]
  21. ^ Warren ran as a Republican for his first and third terms. For his second term, he won the nomination of the Republican, Democratic, and Progressive parties.
  22. ^ Resigned to become Chief Justice of the United States.
  23. ^ As president pro tempore of the state senate, filled unexpired term.
  24. ^ Resigned to be U.S. Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare.
  25. ^ Resigned after being convicted of perjury.[10]
  26. ^ a b In a recall election, voters recalled Gray Davis and elected Arnold Schwarzenegger to replace him.[11]
  27. ^ Elected in a special election, and subsequently elected to a full term.
  28. ^ a b Gavin Newsom delayed his swearing in as lieutenant governor until January 10, 2011, to remain as mayor of San Francisco. Abel Maldonado stayed on as lieutenant governor, with both sides agreeing that the constitution allows such a situation.[12]
  29. ^ Governor Brown's third term expires on January 5, 2015; he is not term limited, since his two earlier terms predated the limit.

References[edit]

General
Constitutions
Specific
  1. ^ Henning, W.F. (1899). Constitution of the State of California. C.W. Palm Company. Retrieved January 18, 2008. 
  2. ^ "California Ballot Propositions 1990-1999". Los Angeles County Law Library. Retrieved August 2, 2010. 
  3. ^ CA Const. art. V, § 2
  4. ^ CA Const. art. V, § 10
  5. ^ "Inauguration of Governor Jerry Brown". Office of Governor Jerry Brown. Retrieved January 3, 2011. 
  6. ^ "California Governor Peter Hardeman Burnett". National Governors Association. Retrieved October 15, 2008. [dead link]
  7. ^ Durham, Walter T. (1997). Volunteer Forty-niners: Tennesseans and the California Gold Rush. Vanderbilt University Press. p. 193. ISBN 0-8265-1298-4. Retrieved August 4, 2010. 
  8. ^ "California Governor Hiram Warren Johnson". National Governors Association. Retrieved October 15, 2008. [dead link]
  9. ^ "Fitts Submits His Resignation". Los Angeles Times. September 29, 1928. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 
  10. ^ Robinson, Jr., Timothy S. (October 3, 1974). "Reinecke Quits, Gets Suspended Sentence". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 18, 2008. 
  11. ^ "Statewide Special Election". California Secretary of State. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 
  12. ^ Van Oot, Torey. "The Buzz: With Newsom in the wings, Maldonado's still at work". The Sacramento Bee. Retrieved January 9, 2011. [dead link]
  13. ^ "California Governor John Bigler". National Governors Association. Retrieved October 15, 2008. [dead link]
  14. ^ "Weller, John B.". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 
  15. ^ "Latham, Milton Slocum". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 
  16. ^ "Stanford, Leland". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 
  17. ^ "Low, Frederick Ferdinand". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 
  18. ^ "Booth, Newton". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 
  19. ^ "Pacheco, Romualdo". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 
  20. ^ "Perkins, George Clement". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 
  21. ^ "Markham, Henry Harrison". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 
  22. ^ "Budd, James Herbert". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 
  23. ^ "California Governor Henry Tifft Gage". National Governors Association. Retrieved October 15, 2008. [dead link]
  24. ^ "Gillett, James Norris". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 
  25. ^ "Johnson, Hiram Warren". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 
  26. ^ "Stephens, William Dennison". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 
  27. ^ "California Governor Earl Warren". National Governors Association. Retrieved October 15, 2008. [dead link]
  28. ^ "California Governor Ronald Wilson Reagan". National Governors Association. Retrieved October 15, 2008. [dead link]
  29. ^ "Wilson, Pete". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved October 15, 2008. 

External links[edit]