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Governor Sarah Palin (R)




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Sarah Palin- (b. Feb. 11, 1964)

Governor Sarah Palin made history on Dec. 4, 2006, when she took office as the first woman elected to the office of Governor of Alaska. Palin is the 11th governor of Alaska. In the summer of 2008, Republican presidential nominee John McCain chose Sarah Palin to serve as his running mate. Though the McCain-Palin ticket lost to Barack Obama, the Republican Party's conservative base embraced Sarah Palin as a true conservative candidate, and her stock has risen steadily ever since the election as a strong candidate for the 2012 Republican Presidential nomination. On July 3, 2009, Governor Palin announced her resignation from the governship of Alaska. See below for an analysis of this sudden political move and a video of her resignation announcement.

Even before the McCain-Palin ticket lost to Democrats Barack Obama and Joe Biden, SarahPalin was already being mentioned as a possible presidential candidate in 2012.

During the national camapaign in which Senator McCain chose Palin to serve as his running mate, she has been the subject of numerous political attacks and jokes. Several fake photos of Sarah Palin, as well as a fake SAT score sheet, have been posted on the internet as a means of embarrassing her. Also, revelations of the expensive wardrobe the McCain camp bought for Governor Palin and her husband Todd brought forth accusations that Palin was a diva who lived the high life on the campaign trail.

Since the campaign's end, Sarah Palin's personal life and family have been dragged through the mud, as Bristol's boyfriend, and the father of her child, very publicly broke up with her and then went on national television to criticize Sarah and Todd Palin and their family. Sarah Palin got into a very public feud with late-night talk show host David Letterman when he made an inappropriate joke regarding sex and the Palin's 14-year old daughter.

On July 3, 2009, Sarah Palin announced she was resigning as governor of Alaska on July 26. Speculation immediately centered on Palin's presidential ambitions. Not being tied to Alaska for the next few years will free her up to travel throughout the United States, making high-profile policy speeches, raising money, and, perhaps most importantly, spend a lot of time in the early caucus and primary states, namely Iowa and New Hampshire.


Sarah Palin announcing her resignation as Alaska Governor, July 3, 2009


Palin's Life Story

Since taking office, her top priorities have been resource development, education and workforce development, public health and safety, and transportation and infrastructure development.



Under her leadership, Alaska invested $5 billion in state savings, overhauled education funding, and implemented the Senior Benefits Program that provides support for low-income older Alaskans. She created Alaska’s Petroleum Systems Integrity Office to provide oversight and maintenance of oil and gas equipment, facilities and infrastructure, and the Climate Change Subcabinet to prepare a climate change strategy for Alaska.

During her first legislative session, Governor Palin’s administration passed two major pieces of legislation – an overhaul of the state’s ethics laws and a competitive process to construct a gas pipeline.

Governor Palin is chair of the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission, a multi-state government agency that promotes the conservation and efficient recovery of domestic oil and natural gas resources while protecting health, safety and the environment. She was recently named chair of the National Governors Association (NGA) Natural Resources Committee, which is charged with pursuing legislation to ensure state needs are considered as federal policy is formulated in the areas of agriculture, energy, environmental protection and natural resource management. Prior to being named to this position, she served as co-chair of this committee.

Prior to her election as governor, Palin served two terms on the Wasilla City Council and two terms as the mayor/manager of Wasilla. During her tenure, she reduced property tax levels while increasing services and made Wasilla a business friendly environment, drawing in new industry.

She has served as chair of the Alaska Conservation Commission, which regulates Alaska's most valuable non-renewable resources: oil and gas. She was elected by her peers to serve as president of the Alaska Conference of Mayors. In this role, she worked with local, state and federal officials to promote solutions to the needs of Alaska's communities.



Sarah Heath Palin arrived in Alaska with her family in 1964, when her parents came to teach school in Skagway. She received a bachelor of science degree in communications-journalism from the University of Idaho in 1987. Palin, who graduated from Wasilla High School in 1982, has lived in Skagway, Eagle River and Wasilla.

She is married to Todd Palin, who is a lifelong Alaskan, a production operator on the North Slope and a four-time champion of the Iron Dog, the world's longest snowmachine race.

Todd and Sarah fish in Bristol Bay with their children – Track, Bristol, Willow, Piper and Trig. Through Todd’s Yup'ik grandmother, Alaska’s Native heritage plays an important role in their family. Track enlisted in the U.S. Army on Sept. 11, 2007.

Prior to taking office, Palin served on numerous boards and commissions throughout the state. She was active in her family’s pursuits – including serving as a sports team mom and school volunteer. She also runs marathons.

Palin is a lifetime member of the NRA and enjoys hunting, fishing, Alaska history, and, increasingly, national politics.

Family, Career, and Personal Highlights

Charles R. Heath --Father

Sarah Heath (née Sheeran) --Mother

Todd Palin (b. September 6, 1964) --Husband

Track (b. 1989) --Son

Bristol (b. 1990) --Daughter

Willow (b. 1995) --Daughter

Piper (b. 2001) --Daughter

Trig (b. 2008) --Son


Christian (member of Wasilla Bible Church)


Class of 1982: Wasilla High School (Alaska)

--Leader of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes chapter at Wasilla

--Captain of the school's girls' basketball team (played point guard)

1987: BS Communications-Journalism, University of Idaho.



1988: Sports Reporter

--In 1988, KTUU-TV and KTVA-TV in Anchorage, Alaska,

--Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman newspaper


Political Career:

1992-1995: Wasilla City Council (2 terms)

1996-2002: Mayor of Wasilla

2002 : Candidate for the Republican nomination for lieutenant governor, (finished second to Loren Leman in a five-way Republican primary)

2003-2004: Member of the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (appointed by Gov. Murkowski)

--Palin resigned in January, 2004 in protest of what she called the "lack of ethics" by fellow Republican members

2003 to June 2005: Palin served as one of three directors of the "Ted Stevens Excellence in Public Service, Inc.," a special interest group providing political training for Republican women in Alaska

2006-Present: Governor of the State of Alaska (R).

2008: Vice-Presidential nominee (R)


Links and Resources on Governor Sarah Palin

The official website of Alaska Governor Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin-Wikipedia Article - McCain-Palin 2008

Sarah Palin Dirt--

The Palin Problem: If McCain loses, the GOP will have a head vs. heart decision to make about the party's veep pick.--Interesting Newsweek article on Sarah Palin's and the GOP's choices going into the next election cycle.

Sarah Palin returns to a chillier Alaska--LA Times, Nov. 6, 2008

SNAP ANALYSIS: Why is Sarah Palin resigning as Alaska governor?--Reuters, July 3, 2009

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