Born and raised in central Ohio, Karen Waldbillig Kasich obtained a bachelor’s degree in communications from The Ohio State University. Mrs. Kasich established a career in health care, public relations and marketing that spanned nearly two decades. She last served as a vice president with GSW Worldwide, an agency focused on health care and the pharmaceutical industry.

Mrs. Kasich is passionate about her role as mother to her children and views it as her top priority. As first lady of Ohio, she is honored to have an opportunity to increase awareness on topics that are near and dear to her heart: children's wellness and women's heart health. Mrs. Kasich currently serves as a member of both The Partnership at Drugfree.org’s public relations advisory board and Ohio Valley’s Go Red for Women Council, the American Heart Association’s program empowering women to live heart-healthy lifestyles. She also encourages children to walk and bike to school safely and confidently as the Ohio Department of Transportation’s Safe Routes to School Ambassador.

The first lady and her husband, Governor John Kasich, were married in 1997 and have two children, twin daughters Emma and Reese.