John O. Bennett

Gov. John O. Bennett

New Jersey

January 8, 2002 - January 12, 2002

August 6, 1948



Birth State
New Jersey

Married Peg Bennett


Due to the fact that the 2002 New Jersey state legislature was split evenly at 20-20 (Democrats and Republicans), there were two senate presidents sworn in to take over for Acting Governor and Senate President Donald T. DiFrancesco (R) when his term expired on January 8, 2002. Since the newly elected governor, James E. McGreevey (D) would not be sworn in until noon on January 15, 2002, Senator John O. Bennett (R) shared the acting-governorship with Senator Richard J. Codey (D), co-presidents of the Senate. The two agreed to split the time between Acting Governor DiFrancesco’s departure and Governor-Elect McGreevey’s inauguration; Senator Bennett thus served as acting governor from 1:30 pm January 8, 2002 until 12:01 am January 12, 2002 and Senator Codey was acting governor from 12:01am January 12, 2002 until noon January 15, 2002 at which point Governor James McGreevey became New Jersey’s first chief executive serving as governor and not acting governor since the departure of Governor Christine Todd Whitman to head the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency in January 2001.