See the former jobs of the governor of Minnesota

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September 26, 2022

See the former jobs of the governor of Minnesota

In 2018, 36 out of the nation's 50 states held elections for governor. A record-shattering 16 women were major party nominees the position, nine of whom were successful, making the current number of female governors tied with the all-time high number set in 2004. The LGBTQ+ community also made historic strides, as Colorado's Jared Polis became the first openly gay man to be elected governor in the United States, and Oregon's Kate Brown, who is bisexual, was reelected in her state.

Fast forward to the 2022 elections, and 36 states will once again elect—or reelect— their governors. But who are these powerful politicians, and what were they doing before they took their states' reigns?

Stacker analyzed the former roles every current governor had before taking office and found varying resumes, from positions as cabinet secretaries to the CEO of an ice cream company. Read on to find out where your state's governor developed and honed the leadership skills that propelled them to public office or check out the national story here.

Tim Walz (D-Minnesota)

Upon graduating from Chadron State College in 1989, Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz taught high schoolers in China, an opportunity provided by Harvard University. After returning home, Walz served in the Army National Guard. In 1996, he accepted a position teaching social studies in Mankato, where he also coached football. Walz was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2006, representing Minnesota's first congressional district.

While all 50 governors bring with them experiences from different walks of life, some share several commonalities. A total of four current governors have served in the military, and 15 were at one point the lieutenant governor of their states. Eleven governors previously served in the U.S. House of Representatives, while just one was a former U.S. senator.

Keep reading below to see the former jobs of governors of other states in your region.


Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds' first job was as an assistant to an independent pharmacist, followed by a role as a motor vehicles clerk in the Clarke County Treasurer's Office. Not even four years later, she was elected county treasurer, launching her political career. She spent 14 years in the treasurer's office overall before she ran for state senate.


Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer entered the workforce at age 15 with a job at Burlingame Lumber, and also worked early on at Target and the Royal Fork Buffet. In 2016, she became a prosecutor for Ingraham County, where she established a new domestic violence and sexual assault unit. Later, she taught at the University of Michigan and Michigan State University.

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