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Kathleen Sebelius
Kathleen Sebelius official portrait.jpg
21st United States Secretary of Health and Human Services
In office
April 28, 2009 – June 9, 2014
President Barack Obama
Deputy Bill Corr
Preceded by Mike Leavitt
Succeeded by Sylvia Mathews Burwell
44th Governor of Kansas
In office
January 13, 2003 – April 28, 2009
Lieutenant John Moore
Mark Parkinson
Preceded by Bill Graves
Succeeded by Mark Parkinson
23rd Insurance Commissioner of Kansas
In office
January 9, 1995 – January 13, 2003
Governor Bill Graves
Preceded by Ronald Todd
Succeeded by Sandy Praeger
Personal details
Kathleen Gilligan

May 15, 1948 (1948-05-15) (age 73)
Cincinnati, Ohio, U.S.
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Gary Sebelius
Alma mater Trinity Washington University
University of Kansas, Lawrence

Kathleen Sebelius (born May 15, 1948) is an American businesswoman and politician who served as the 21st United States Secretary of Health and Human Services from 2009 until 2014. Previously, she was the 44th Governor of Kansas from 2003 to 2009, the second woman to hold that office. She is a member of the Democratic Party.

Sebelius was the Democratic respondent to the 2008 State of the Union address and is chair-emerita of the Democratic Governors Association (she was its first female chair). On April 10, 2014, Sebelius announced her resignation as Secretary of Health and Human Services. She is CEO of Sebelius Resources LLC.

Early life and education

Kathleen Sebelius - UN Press Conference May 2010
Kathleen Sebelius - UN Press Conference May 2010

Sebelius was born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio, the daughter of Mary Kathryn (née Dixon) and John "Jack" Gilligan. Her father is a former Democratic Ohio Governor and thus they became the first father/daughter governor duo in the United States after her election.

She attended the Summit Country Day School in Cincinnati and graduated from Trinity Washington University in Washington, D.C. with a B.A. in political science. She later earned a master of public administration degree from the University of Kansas. She moved to Kansas in 1974. Sebelius served as executive director and chief lobbyist for the Kansas Trial Lawyers Association from 1977 to 1986.

Later career

Kathleen Sebelius alternate HHS portrait
Kathleen Sebelius portrait

After leaving the cabinet, Sebelius founded and became CEO of Sebelius Resources LLC, which provides strategic advice to private companies, non-profit organizations, higher education institutions, and financial investors.

Sebelius serves as a member of the boards of directors of companies including Dermira Inc., Grand Rounds, Inc., and Humacyte Inc., and of the Estee Lauder Foundation and the Kaiser Family Foundation. In 1978, she was elected to the Common Cause National Governing Board. She serves on advisory boards for the Dole Institute of Politics and Solera Health. Sebelius is a senior advisor to Out Leadership and the Aspen Institute, where she co-chairs the Aspen Health Strategy Group. Sebelius is a frequent keynote speaker for national and international organizations.

Kathleen Sebelius, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, met with Ghulam Nabi Azad, Minister of Health and Family Welfare, during her six day visit to India
Kathleen Sebelius met with the Minister of Health and Family Welfare, during her six day visit to India

Personal life

She married K. Gary Sebelius, a federal magistrate judge and the son of former Republican congressman Keith Sebelius, on December 31, 1974 in Columbus, Ohio. They have two sons. She visits her childhood and current vacation home, located in Leland, Michigan, north of Traverse City, Michigan.

An avid fan of jazz music, Sebelius has a 30-year streak of annually attending Jazz Fest in New Orleans as of 2009.

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