About Ralph Northam
Governor Ralph Northam is the 73rd governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia. He was elected governor on November 7, 2017, and inaugurated on January 13, 2018.
Governor Northam was born and raised on the Eastern Shore of Virginia. He later went on to graduate from Virginia Military Institute with distinction and earn an M.D. from Eastern Virginia Medical School.
Following his residency in pediatric medicine in San Antonio, Governor Northam served eight years of active duty in the US Army, rising to the rank of major. He served as an Army doctor in Germany during the Gulf War, treating soldiers wounded in Operation Desert Storm.
After completing his service as an Army doctor, Governor Northam returned home to practice pediatric neurology at Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters in Norfolk, Virginia. He also served as Assistant Professor of Neurology at Eastern Virginia Medical School, where he taught medicine and ethics, and has eighteen years of volunteer service as Medical Director for the Edmarc Hospice for Children in Portsmouth, Virginia.
In 2008, Governor Northam began his first term as a Virginia state senator, where he won numerous legislative battles aimed at keeping Virginians safe. Some of his victories include prohibiting smoking in restaurants, protecting young athletes who have sustained concussions, improving the health of the Chesapeake Bay, and shielding first responders from communicable diseases.
Governor Northam was elected Lieutenant Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia on November 5, 2013. As lieutenant governor, he prioritized boosting economic development, improving early childhood education, reforming mental health, and protecting women’s health care access.
Governor Northam and his wife Pam Northam, a long-time Elementary School teacher and conservation activist, have two children. Their son Wes is a doctor, and their daughter Aubrey is a graduate of the University of Virginia.