Deval Patrick served two terms as the 71st governor of Massachusetts. He was reelected to a second term in November 2010, renewing his commitment to expanding opportunity Guided by the advice of his grandmother to “hope for the best and work for it,” Governor Patrick entered office in 2006, a firsttime candidate propelled by an unprecedented grassroots campaign. Despite a challenging economic environment, the Governor maintained a disciplined growth strategy of investment in education, innovation and infrastructure, while delivering timely, balanced budgets and reducing state headcount. Governor Patrick funded public education at the highest levels in the history of the Commonwealth, achieved nation-leading student performance, and earned Massachusetts the top spot in the national Race to the Top competition. Targeted initiatives that play to the Commonwealth’s unique strengths, like the Governor’s landmark 10-year, $1 billion program to promote the state’s life sciences industry, have positioned the state as a global leader in biotech, bio pharmaceuticals and digital technology, and as a national leader in clean and alternative energy.
Governor Patrick committed the state to renewing its aging and neglected infrastructure and oversaw the expansion of affordable health care to over 98% of Massachusetts residents. The Patrick administration also accomplished major reforms that had eluded decades of other elected leadership, including reform of the state’s pension systems, ethics laws, education rules, and transportation bureaucracy.
Patrick came to Massachusetts in 1970 at the age of 14. A motivated student despite the difficult circumstances of poor and sometimes violent Chicago schools, he was awarded a scholarship to Milton Academy through A Better Chance, a Boston-based organization. He is a graduate of Harvard College, the first in his family to attend college, and of Harvard Law School. After clerking for a federal judge, he led a successful career in the private sector as an attorney and business executive, rising to partner at two Boston law firms and to senior executive positions at Texaco and Coca-Cola. In 1994, President Clinton appointed Patrick as Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights, the nation’s top civil rights post.
Patrick has served on corporate and not-for-profit boards, is the recipient of several honorary degrees, is a Crown Fellow of the Aspen Institute, and is the author of two books, A Reason to Believe: Lessons from an Improbable Life and Faith in the Dream: A Call to the Nation to Reclaim American Values.