Prior to serving as KY.’s 61st Gov. overseeing basically a $10 billion enterprise with over 30,000 employees, Steve served as Attny. Genl. from 1979 to 1983 & LT. Gov. from 1983 to 1987, as well as a KY. House of Reps from 1973 to 1979. In, 1987, prior to his 1st term as Governor in 2007, he joined the Stites & Harbison law firm & supervised the firm’s Lexington office.
As Governor, Steve successfully brought KY. through the historic 2008 recession by making KY. a leader in job creation. Not to mention weathering an apocalyptic Jan. 2009 Ice Storm that crippled almost a million Kentuckians in total darkness for days & in some cases weeks! However, under his leadership, KY’s. the unemployment rate dropped from 10.7% to 4.9%, & set export records for 4 years in a row. In all, Beshear’s administration announced almost 2,300 new expansion projects-creating some $19.3 billion in investment & more than 87,000 jobs. The economic turnaround culminated in 2014 by KY. winning Site Selection magazine’s coveted Gov.’s Cup, meaning KY. finished 1st in the nation for Econ. Dev. per capita. Not too shabby!
In 2013, Steve announced the expansion of the Medicaid program under the Affordable Care Act & launched the KY. Health Benefit Exchange, benefiting over 500,000 Kentuckians. These actions together reduced the state’s uninsured rate from over 20% to 8% & ensured for the 1st time in history every Kentuckian would have access to affordable health insurance.
Gov. Beshear is married to former First lady Jane Beshear & their son Andy Beshear became KY’s 50th Attorney General.