Gretchen Whitmer is the 49th Governor of the state of Michigan. She assumed her current post in the office on January 1, 2019. Whitmer has joined other governors and public officials around the nation in the fight against the COVID-19 outbreak to attempt to protect the health and safety of as many citizens as possible. To help you become more familiar with the politician, here are 10 things that you probably didn't know about Whitmer.
1. She was formerly the Ingham County Prosecutor
Whitmer assumed the job of County prosecutor in July of 2016, serving until December 31, 2016. She replaced Stuart Dunnings III and was succeeded by Carol Siemon after less than 6 months on the job. She is a member of the Democratic political party.
2. Gretchen Whitmer is 48 years old
She was born on August 23, 1971. This makes her 48 years old. Gretchen is a native of the state of Michigan. Her mother and father were both lawyers and she was raised in the state. She attended Forest Hills Central High School in the Grand Rapids area. Whitmer is the oldest child in her family. Her parents are Sharon H. Reisig and Richard Whitmer.
3. Her parents were divorced
Gretchen's mother and father divorced when she was just 10 years old. She had two younger siblings that she was raised with. Her mother moved with the children from Lansing, Michigan to Grand Rapids, where Gretchen grew up. Her father had a busy professional schedule but he journeyed from his home in Detroit to see the children a minimum of once per week. Although her parents were no longer together, he was consistently present and a part of her upbringing.
4. She learned about politics early in life
Gretchen Whitmer grew up in a family where politics was a way of life. Her mother worked under the Michigan Attorney General Frank Kelley as an assistant attorney general. Her father served under Governor William Milliken as the head of the Michigan State Department of Commerce. He was also the CEO of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan. With both parents serving in important roles in State government, it was a logical progression for Gretchen to follow in their footsteps.
5. Gretchen Whitmer has a solid academic background
Whitmer attended Michigan State University where she earned her bachelor of arts degree in communications. She also attended the Michigan State University College of Law. After completing her studies there, she attended the Detroit College of Law at Michigan State University where she earned her JD degree in 1998. She has a solid educational background in law and communications.
6. It took a few tries to get elected
Gretchen ran for the statehouse in the 1990s. Although her first bid was unsuccessful she kept trying. Finally, she was elected in 2000. This was the start of her successful career in government leadership. She became a state senator in 2006 and she was so popular that she occupied the office until she was obliged to step down in 2015 due to term limits. She was the first female Democrat to lead the state in the Senate in 2011 and she set a powerful precedent for women in politics in the region.
7. She has been married twice
Whitmer married Gary Shrewsbury, her first husband, but the relationship didn't work out and it ended in divorce. She found love once again and married Marc Mallory in 2011. The couple is still together. She has two children and she currently resides at the Governor's mansion with her family.
8. She went out on a limb for a worthy cause
Whitmer takes a strong stand on abortion and productive rights. She shared a very deep and personal experience with the world to support her views on the matter. She herself was a victim of sexual assault. The speech that she delivered during the abortion debate gained national attention.
9. She recently called for assistance from the Michigan National Guard
Gretchen Whitmer requested President Trump's approval for use of the Michigan National Guard to aid in humanitarian assistance for the people living within the borders of the state. He approved the request for help. We've learned that members of the national guard will help to disinfect public spaces as well as distribute medical supplies and food. She is doing her best to rally as many resources as she possibly can for the current crisis. The National Guard has agreed to allocate as many as 3,000 members and they are assigned for a period of up to 30 days covering the areas of the state that show the greatest need. This was a move that she made in the best interest of the residents of the state of Michigan to ensure that they have access to basic resources.
10. Joe Biden is eying her as a running mate
Gretchen Whitmer has an impressive track record of success in the political world. She is popular with her constituency and she has also caught the attention of Joe Biden who has placed her on his list of potential running mates for vice president as his campaign continues to ramp up for the presidency. Her tangles with President Trump over the COVID-19 pandemic have raised her political profile and garnered national attention. Biden confirmed that she was already under consideration for the position before the present situation developed. Whitmer has a lot going for her. She has proven that she is a capable leader who juggles many roles simultaneously. She is a mother, a wife, a career politician and a concerned citizen who is willing to fight for the things that she believes are right, and to go to battle against the President of the United States if that is what it takes to protect the residents of her home state. She is a fighter, a negotiator and a woman who takes action.
Written by Allen Lee
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