About Governor Mary Fallin
Governor Mary Fallin was elected November 2, 2010, during a historic election in which she became the first-ever female governor of Oklahoma. She was inaugurated on the steps of the Oklahoma Capitol as the state’s 27th governor on January 10, 2011.
After working in the private sector as a regional manager for a national hotel chain, Fallin made her first foray into public service in 1990 when she was elected to the Oklahoma House of Representatives. This began her long and distinguished career of public service dedicated to conservative, commonsense solutions to the challenges facing Oklahoma families and small businesses.
During her time in the House, Fallin earned a reputation as a consensus builder who was willing to reach across the aisle. Serving in the Republican minority, she managed to pass more than a dozen bills that were signed into law by the state’s Democratic governor, including Oklahoma’s first “anti-stalker law” and measures aimed at improving the business climate in Oklahoma. She also worked to lower the health care costs of small businesses in Oklahoma and for her work in this area was honored as a "Legislator of the Year" by the American Legislative Exchange Council.
In 1994, Fallin would first make history by becoming the first woman and first Republican to be elected lieutenant governor of Oklahoma, an office she would hold for 12 years. In this capacity, Fallin focused her attention on issues affecting job creation and economic development. She served on 10 boards or commissions involving business and quality-of-life issues in Oklahoma. In 1997, she chaired the Fallin Commission on Workers’ Compensation, which released a comprehensive reform plan to lower costs of workers’ comp while creating a system that was fair to both businesses and workers. Fallin also used her position as president of the Oklahoma State Senate to allow the citizens of Oklahoma to vote on "Right to Work," which ended the practice of compelling workers to join and pay dues to a union. In 2001, Oklahoma became the first state in the country to pass such a law in more than 25 years.
Fallin was elected to the U.S. Congress in 2006 where she represented the Fifth District of Oklahoma. In Congress, Fallin served on the committees for small business, transportation and infrastructure, natural resources and armed services. Fallin coauthored numerous pieces of legislation to lower taxes, reduce regulation on businesses and individuals, fight federal overreach, increase American energy production, create jobs and protect constitutional liberties.
As governor, Fallin has cited job growth and retention, education reform, government modernization and protecting Oklahoma from the intrusions of Washington, D.C., as top priorities. During Fallin’s administration, Oklahoma has consistently ranked among the top states for job creation. In fiscal year 2012, Oklahoma added a net 38,000 jobs which ranked the state second in the nation for job creation.
In her first session as governor, Fallin saw many of her legislative initiatives signed into law including historic lawsuit reform and workers’ compensation reforms, comprehensive education reform, and policies to modernize and streamline government operations.
Additionally, the governor has launched the Complete College America initiative to dramatically increase the number of college graduates in Oklahoma to help the state retain and attract jobs.
The governor also has put forward a road and bridge plan to fix all of the currently identified structurally deficient bridges on the state highway system. She also introduced the Oklahoma First Energy Plan, a comprehensive energy road map from the state.
In 2013, Fallin has named job creation, eliminating government waste and improving health and wellness in Oklahoma as priorities. Her legislative agenda includes proposals for tax cuts, workers compensation reform, increased in resources for education and health initiatives, as well as new programs to improve mental health.
Fallin is the vice-chair of the National Governors Association.
The governor is a graduate of Oklahoma State University.
She is married to Wade Christensen, an Oklahoma City attorney who is the state’s first “First Gentleman.” The couple has six children between them. They attend Crossings Community Church in northwest Oklahoma City.
Click here to download the official press photo of Governor Mary Fallin.