RONNIE MUSGROVE was born in Tocowa, Mississippi. He is a graduate of Northwest Community College, the University of Mississippi, and the University of Mississippi Law School. His term as governor followed a distinguished career of public service. A two-term state senator, Musgrove chaired the Education Committee. In 1998 he was recognized nationally as a leader among his peers, serving as chair of the National Conference of Lieutenant Governors. He served as chair of the Southern Regional Education Board, as the chair-elect for the Southern States Energy Board, on the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards and the Executive Committee for the Democratic Governors’ Association, where he served as vice chair of policy. In the face of a national recession, Musgrove’s efforts created more than 52,000 new jobs and brought more than $13.5 billion in new investments to the state. In August 2000, Musgrove crafted a new jobs program for the state called the Advantage Mississippi Initiative (AMI). After its passage, Mississippi was selected as the home for a new $1.4-billion Nissan Motor Company production plant. Throughout his career, Musgrove has been a champion of education. In July 2001, he signed a bill raising teacher pay in Mississippi to the Southeastern average. In 2002 NGA confirmed that Mississippi became the first state in the nation to have an Internet-accessible computer in every classroom. Governor Musgrove served as NGA’s vice chairman.