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Kathleen Sebelius

Gov. Kathleen Sebelius

  • January 9, 2003 - April 28, 2009
  • Democrat
  • May 15, 1948
  • Ohio
  • Trinity College; University of Kansas
  • Married Gary Sebelius; two sons
  • Resigned
  • Cabinet secretary


KATHLEEN SEBELIUS became the 44th governor of the state of Kansas in 2003. Sebelius was reelected to a second term in 2006. Sebelius resigned from office in April 2009 to accept the appointment as U.S. Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in the Obama Administration.

Sebelius’ administration was committed to growing the Kansas economy and creating jobs; ensuring every Kansas child received a quality education; protecting Kansas families and communities; improving access to quality, affordable health care; and taking advantage of the state’s renewable energy assets. In 2005, Timemagazine named her one of the nation’s top five governors.

Sebelius served on the National Governors Association’s Executive Committee and co-chaired the 2007-2008 NGA initiative, Securing a Clean Energy Future. Sebelius chaired the Education Commission of the States and the Democratic Governors Association.

Married to husband, Gary, a federal magistrate judge, for 34 years, they have two sons: Ned and John. Both Sebelius boys are products of the Topeka public school system, pre-kindergarten through high school. Ned is a law student, and John is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design. Sebelius is the first daughter of a Governor (John Gilligan, Ohio, 1971-1975) in U.S. history to be elected to that same position.

Recent Kansas Governors