MARK S. SCHWEIKER was born in Levittown, Bucks County. He graduated from Bishop Egan High School and earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Bloomsburg University in 1975. He holds a master's degree in administration from Rider University. After college, he entered the business world and advanced to executive positions at Merrill Lynch, McGraw Hill, and his own management consulting firm. He was first elected to public office in 1979 as Middletown Township Supervisor, and in 1987 he was elected Bucks County Commissioner. He was elected lieutenant governor in November 1994 and reelected in November 1998. He was sworn in as Pennsylvania's 44th governor on October 5, 2001, following Governor Tom Ridge's appointment by President George W. Bush to head the nation's Office of Homeland Security. He worked tirelessly to make the safety and security of Pennsylvania's neighborhoods his top priority. As his first official act, Governor Schweiker signed an executive order that established a security task force charged with creating a comprehensive antiterrorism strategy. Delivering on another promise to increase safety and security in Pennsylvania, he signed legislation increasing the state police complement by 100 - the first increase since 1972. To make Pennsylvania more attractive to employers and employees, he focused on worker training and retraining, creating a rapid response team to deliver accelerated assistance to dislocated workers.