Tim Kaine

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Tim Kaine (1958-) is Chairman of the Democratic National Committee. His term as Governor of Virginia ended in 2009, and a Virginia governor cannot have a consecutive term; he was succeeded by Bob McDonnell (R). Many consider him headed for higher roles in the U.S. Democratic Party; there was speculation that Barack Obama might have picked him as the vice-presidential candidate.

He entered politics in 1994, from the private practice of law, specializing in fair housing, and taught legal ethics for six years at the University of Richmond Law School. After serving four terms on the Richmond City Council, he was elected Lieutenant Governor of Virginia. In Virginia, as opposed to many U.S. states, the Governor and Lieutenant Governor are elected separately and may be political opponent; he enjoyed a close working relationship with, and endorsement by, his predecessor, Mark R. Warner.

For the 2008-2009 term, he was chair of the Southern Governors Association, where he was focused on addressing climate change in the South.

Born in Kansas City, Kansas, he worked in his father's ironworking shop. He took a year of leave, while in law school, to head a Catholic school in Honduras, where he taught welding and carpentry. While a devout Catholic, he has accepted the state's laws on capital punishment and abortion, both of which he personally opposes.

In 1984, he married Anne Holton, daughter of Linwood Holton, the Virginia Governor between 1970 and 1974, the only person to have lived in the Governor's Mansion as a child and adult.


  • B.A., University of Missouri, 1979
  • J.D., Harvard, 1983