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|Assumed office = 2009
|Assumed office = 2009
|Political party = Democratic
|Political party = Democratic
|Predecessor = Janet Rzewnicki
|Predecessor = [[Ruth Ann Minner]] (D)
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Revision as of 12:03, 9 April 2014

Jack Markell
Governor of Delaware
In office
January 20, 2009 - Present
Term ends
Years in position 6
PredecessorRuth Ann Minner (D)
Base salary$171,000
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
First electedNovember 4, 2008
Next generalNovember 8, 2016
Campaign $$9,098,587
Term limits2 terms
Prior offices
Delaware State Treasurer
1999 - 2009
High schoolNewark High School
Bachelor'sBrown University
Master'sUniversity of Chicago
Date of birthNovember 26, 1960
Place of birthCentreville, Delaware
Office website
Personal website
Campaign website
Jack A. Markell (born November 26, 1960 in Centerville, Delaware) is the 73rd and current Democratic Governor of Delaware. He was first elected to the position on November 4, 2008 and was sworn in alongside Lieutenant Governor Matthew Denn, a fellow Democrat, on January 20, 2009. When he took office, Markell became the state's first Jewish governor.

Markell, who previously served three terms as state treasurer, is currently serving his second consecutive term as governor. He recently won re-election in 2012. Markell ran unopposed in the Democratic primary on September 11, 2012 and went on to defeat Jeff Cragg (R) and two third-party challengers in the general election on November 6, 2012.[1]

Before entering politics, Markell had a successful career in business, banking and consulting. Notably, Markell served as Vice President for Corporate Development at Nextel, through which he was credited with coming up with the name “Nextel,” and helping to lead the movement to wireless technology.

In his role as governor, Markell has helped shape and adopt new statewide policies regarding pension reform, school safety, campaign finance reporting and disability services. In late 2012, Markell responded to the shooting in Newtown, Connecticut by rolling out a package of gun-control legislation proposing five measures, two of which have been signed into law as of June 2013.[2][3] Markell is a member of the executive committee of the National Governor's Association. He, along with eight other governors, will determine the association's priorities and actions for the year. He was named to this leadership role in August, 2013.[4]

Markell's current term is set to expire in January of 2017. He will not be eligible for re-election in 2016 because state law restricts governors to a lifetime limit of two terms in office.


Markell graduated from Newark High School and Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, with degrees in economics and development studies and received an MBA degree from the University of Chicago. He is married to Carla Markell, whom he met while attending Newark High School. They have two children, Molly and Michael.

Markell served as Vice President for Corporate Development at Nextel. His other work experience included a senior management position at Comcast Corporation as well as posts as a consultant at McKinsey and Company, Inc. and as a banker at First Chicago Corporation.


  • BA in Economics/Development Studies, Brown University
  • MBA in University of Chicago

Political career

Delaware Governor (2009-Present)

Markell was first elected Delaware Governor in 2008. Markell took the oath of office as the 73rd governor of Delaware on January 20, 2009, becoming the state's first Jewish governor.


Gun control

In the wake of the December 2012 shooting in Newton, Connecticut, Markell proposed a package of gun-control legislation seeking to expand background checks for private gun sales, restrict high capacity magazines and ban assault rifles, prohibit individuals with mental health issues from obtaining a firearm, and make it illegal to bring firearms within 1000 feet of schools.[5][2] Each of the five gun control bills proposed by the Markell administration have faced stiff opposition, and[3] two have been signed into law as of June 2013. One significantly expanded background checks in Delaware on private gun sales.[3], and the other makes reporting of a lost and stolen firearm mandatory within seven days of the owner discovering a weapon is missing.[5] The second measure is aimed at eliminating “straw purchases” which involves individuals buying guns to be illegally given to those who cannot obtain one.[6] This makes Delaware the eighth state in the nation to require citizens to report gun thefts.[6]

"Law enforcement tell us that straw purchasers have two main excuses when a gun they purchases ends up at a crime scene," Markell said. "Those two excuses are: I lost that weapon, or that weapon was stolen. We needed to eliminate these excuses."[3]

Job creation ranking

In a June 2013 analysis by The Business Journals looking at 45 of the country's 50 governors by their job creation record, Markell was ranked number 32. The five governors omitted from the analysis all assumed office in 2013. The ranking was based on a comparison of the annual private sector growth rate in all 50 states using data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.[7][8]

School safety legislation

Markell made instituting school safety plans a priority of his administration, announcing it in his State of the State address in 2011.[9] On September 11, 2012, Markell signed into law a bill creating a formal statewide framework for school safety plans.[10] The bill, Senate Bill 233, the Omnibus School Safety Act, would make Delaware the first state in country with statewide protocol.[10] The bill requires the Delaware Department of Safety and Homeland Security to work with schools, districts and first responders to develop comprehensive, up-to-date safety plans.[10] Each safety plan will be coordinated with law enforcement agencies, fire departments and other first responders and will comply with the National Incident Management System.[10][11] “We want our kids to go as far as their potential will take them but, we can’t control everything. For students to learn to the best of their abilities, they need, first and foremost, to be safe. Our goal is to bring comprehensive school safety plans to every public school and district in our state. This law is an important part of an ambitious, multi-year effort to make our schools and the students in our schools safer," Markell said in a press conference on Sept. 10 after signing the bill.

Disability services

On August 3, 2012 Markell signed two bills providing services for people with hearing and speech disabilities.[12][13] One bill, Senate Bill 248, provides telecommunications services for the deaf and those with hearing loss or speech disabilities. The other, House Bill 384, updates the Universal Newborn and Infant Hearing Screening Act. The update requires a tracking and intervention protocol when a child has been identified as needing additional hearing services. It also creates the Early Hearing Detection and Intervention Advisory Board.[13][14]

Campaign finance reform

Markell signed into law on August 16, 2012 three pieces of legislation aimed at increasing transparency and providing greater and more timely information to voters and residents of Delaware.[15][16] The three pieces of legislation - all in effect since January 1, 2013 - include House Bill 300, House Bill 310, and Senate Bill 185.[15][15][15] The first major overhaul of Delaware’s campaign finance laws in more than 20 years,[15] HB 300, also known as the Delaware Elections Disclosure Act, closed a "loophole" with campaign advertisements, and mandates prompt reporting of third-party spending on campaign ads.[15] The others increased the penalties for late filing of elections disclosure reports from $50 a month to $50 a day and $50 a day for incomplete campaign finance reports and enhanced disclosure requirements for lobbyists.[15]

Public employee pensions

Markell's plan to cut public employee pension and health benefits received overwhelming support from officials within his administration, legislators and even public employee union officials. The proposal, which became law on May 2, 2011, called for new state employees to pay 5% of their salary after the first $6,000 towards their pension, rather than 3%. It also eliminated the use of overtime when calculating pensions and the "double state share" health care benefit. According to the governor's office, the plan will save Delaware taxpayers $130 million over the next five years and $480 million over the next fifteen.[17][18]

Same-sex marriage

On April 8, 2013, Markell spoke in support of same-sex marriage legislation at the University of Delaware Trabant center. “If you promise to do your part and to assure that the marriage equality bill reaches my desk this year, I make a promise to you. I will sign it,” the governor stated.[19]

Three days later Markell held a press conference to announce the introduction of a bill to legalize same-sex marriage.[20]

Delaware Treasurer (1999-2009)

Markell was first elected Treasurer of Delaware in 1998, unseating Republican incumbent Janet C. Rzewnicki, and was re-elected in 2002 and 2006.

Information technology

In 2001, then-Governor Ruth Ann Minner chose Markell to chair the Information Services Task Force, which developed and implemented recommendations to modify the state's management of information technology. In 2002 he led an effort to streamline and coordinate the procurement of goods and services while using state of the art purchasing techniques.

He has also led the “Health Rewards” initiative which offers Delaware state government employees with comprehensive physical assessments, detailed statistics about how their health compares with their peers across the country and recommendations about how they can improve their health.

Financial Literacy Initiatives

As State Treasurer, Markell led the development of several educational efforts in personal financial management, known collectively as "the Financial Literacy initiatives." He created the Delaware Money School which offers free classes to Delawareans throughout the year on topics such as saving for college and retirement planning. He also began the “Delaware Bank at School Program” which takes banks and financial education to schools. In a third program, he has partnered with the University of Delaware, Center for Economic Education and Entrepreneurship, as well as leading Delaware banks, to teach young children the basics of money and savings.



See also: Delaware gubernatorial election, 2012

Markell won re-election to the governor's office in 2012 on the Democratic ticket.[21][1] The primary election was held on September 11, 2012, and the general election was on November 6, 2012. Markell ran unopposed in the Democratic primary on September 11, 2012.

Governor of Delaware General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngJack Markell Incumbent 69.3% 275,993
     Republican Jeff Cragg 28.6% 113,793
     Libertarian Jesse McVay 0.9% 3,668
     Green Mark Joseph Perri 1.1% 4,575
Total Votes 398,029
Election Results via Delaware Board of Elections.


Markell was endorsed by the Barbara Gittings Delaware Stonewall Democrats.[22]

Campaign finance

Roughly $1 million, or about 52 percent of the $1.9 million raised for Markell's governor’s campaign between January 2011 and October 2012 came from outside the state.[23] According to his campaign finance reports, in 2011 and 2012 about $964,500, or less than half of the money raised by Markell’s campaign, came from Delaware contributors, including $75,000 from the state Democratic Party.[23]

More than 18 percent, or $368,300 – came from more than 560 donors in Pennsylvania, with nearly $112,000 coming from Maryland and $257,750, roughly 13 percent, from donors in New York and New Jersey.[23] Markell's campaign finance reports also show money for his campaign coming from Alabama, Maine, Colorado, Montana, and one donor from Japan.[23]

Markell’s fundraising for the 2012 campaign differed from the 2008 race, when reportedly 60 percent of the more than $4 million he raised came from businesses and individual donors in Delaware.[23]


On November 4, 2008, Markell easily defeated Republican William Swain Lee to win the governorship.[24]

Delaware Governor, 2008
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngJack Markell 67.5% 266,861
     Republican William Swain Lee 32% 126,662
     Blue Enigma Jeffrey Brown 0.4% 1,681
Total Votes 395,204
  • Primary
Delaware Governor Democratic Primary, 2008
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngJack Markell 51.2% 37,849
John Carney 48.8% 36,112
Total Votes 73,961


On November 7, 2006, Markell easily won re-election as state treasurer.[25]

Delaware State Treasurer, 2008
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngJack Markell 70.5% 174,388
     Republican Esthelda R. Parker Selby 29.5% 73,005
Total Votes 247,393

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Markell is available dating back to 2002. Based on available campaign finance records, Markell raised a total of $9,098,587 during that time period. This information was last updated on July 8, 2013.[26]

Jack Markell's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 Governor of Delaware Won $2,185,748
2010 Governor of Delaware Not up for election $237,450
2008 Governor of Delaware* Won $3,751,960
2008 Delaware Treasurer Not up for election $441,164
2006 Delaware Treasurer Won $973,710
2004 Delaware Treasurer Not up for election $1,018,373
2002 Delaware Treasurer Won $490,182
Grand Total Raised $9,098,587
*In 2008, Markell reported raising $3,751,960 for the Governor's race, which he won, and $441,164 for a Treasurer's race, since he could have run for a fourth term.


Markell won re-election to the position of Governor of Delaware in 2012. During that election cycle, Markell raised a total of $2,185,748.

2002, 2006 and 2008

Ballotpedia collects information on campaign donors for each year in which a candidate or incumbent is running for election. The following table offers a breakdown of Jack Markell's donors each year.[27] Click [show] for more information.

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term "Jack + Markell + Delaware + Governor"

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

Jack Markell News Feed

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Contact information

Dover Office
Tatnall Building
William Penn Street, 2nd Fl.
Dover, DE 19901

Telephone: (302) 744-4101
Fax: (302) 739-2775

See also

External links

Suggest a link


  1. 1.0 1.1 Delaware State Board of Elections "General Election Results 2012" Accessed November 6, 2012
  2. 2.0 2.1 USA Today, "Where each state stands on gun-control legislation," January 14, 2013
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 WBOC "Del. Governor: Passing Two of Five Gun Bills Likely it for Now" Accessed June 14, 2013
  4. National Governor's Association, NGA Announces New Executive Committee Leadership, August 4, 2013
  5. 5.0 5.1 Delmarva Public Radio "Delaware Governor Signs Last of Gun Control Laws" Accessed June 14, 2013
  6. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named opposing
  7. The Business Journals, "Governors and jobs: How governors rank for job creation in their states," June 27, 2013
  8. The Business Journals, "How state governors rank on their job-growth record," June 27, 2013
  9. Office of the Governor "Governor Moves Forward with School Safety Plans Focused on Prevention, Protection, Response and Recovery" Accessed September 13, 2012
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 Office of Governor "Governor Signs SB 233, Omnibus School Safety Act" Accessed September 13, 2012
  11. WBOC "Delaware Eyes Comprehensive School Safety Plans" Accessed September 13, 2012
  12. ABC WPVI "Del. governor to sign deaf services bill" Accessed August 14, 2012
  13. 13.0 13.1 The Republic "Delaware governor signs bills providing services for the hearing and speech impaired" Accessed August 14, 2012
  14. "Governor Signs Two Bills Helping Those with Hearing Loss" Accessed August 14, 2012
  15. 15.0 15.1 15.2 15.3 15.4 15.5 15.6 Office of Governor "Governor Signs First Major Update to Delaware Campaign Finance Laws in more than 20 Years" Accessed August 28, 2012
  16. Delaware Online "You can fund, but you can't hide in Delaware" Accessed August 28, 2012
  17. Office of the Governor of Delaware, "Markell Thanks Legislature for Overwhelming Votes of Support for Employee Pension and Healthcare Reform – Changes Will Save Taxpayers over $480M over 15 years," April 14, 2011
  18. Stateline, "States overhaul pensions but pass on 401(k)-style plans," June 21, 2011
  19. Delaware Online, "Markell on gay marriage: 'It can happen here in Delaware'," April 8, 2013
  20. Reuters, "Delaware becomes latest state to take up gay marriage," April 11, 2013
  21. Delaware Elections 2012 "Candidate List" Accessed August 11, 2012
  22. Barbara Gittings Delaware Stonewall Democrats "Endorsed Candidates" Accessed September 5, 2012
  23. 23.0 23.1 23.2 23.3 23.4 Delaware Online "Out-of-state donors pad Markell's funds" Accessed October 16, 2012
  24. State of Delaware, "2008 general election results," accessed December 10, 2011
  25. State of Delaware, "2006 general election results," accessed December 10, 2011
  26. Follow the Money, "Career financing for Jack Markell," accessed July 8, 2013
  27. Follow the, "Home," accessed February 17, 2015
Political offices
Preceded by
Ruth Ann Minner
Governor of Delaware
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Janet Rzewnicki
Delaware State Treasurer
Succeeded by
Velda Jones-Potter