South Carolina Governor Nikki R. Haley
Nikki Randhawa Haley was sworn in as governor of South Carolina on January 12, 2011 and was re-elected in 2014.
Under the governor’s leadership, the state announced more than 58,000 jobs in 45 of 46 counties, more than 25,000 South Carolinians moved from welfare to work and the state made its largest infrastructure investment in a generation without raising taxes.
Haley brought together leaders of both political parties, educators and the business community to pass landmark education reforms. Transparency and accountability in state government were priorities for Haley. In 2011, after a fight that began during her days as a legislator, she ushered through the General Assembly and signed into law a bill that, for the first time, required legislators to start showing their votes on the record, allowing citizens to see how their legislators are spending their tax dollars. And in 2014, the governor signed a once-in-a-generation government restructuring bill that makes the executive branch truly accountable for its operations.
Haley also delivered tax relief for small businesses, pension reform, Medicaid reform and illegal immigration reform.
Haley was first elected in 2004 to the state House to represent the 87th District (Lexington County). Born in Bamberg, the daughter of Indian immigrants, Haley’s first job was keeping the books for her family’s clothing store – at the age of 13. She went on to graduate from Clemson University with a B.S. degree in accounting.
Haley and her husband Michael, a Captain in the Army National Guard and combat veteran who was deployed to Afghanistan’s Helmand Province, attend Mt. Horeb United Methodist Church in Lexington. The Haleys have two children, Rena and Nalin.