haley barbour 2011

Here is a look at the life of former Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour.


Birth date: October 22, 1947

Birth place: Yazoo City, Mississippi

Birth name: Haley Reeves Barbour

Father: Jeptha F. Barbour Jr., attorney

Mother: Grace LeFlore (Johnson) Barbour

Marriage: Marsha (Dickson) Barbour (1971-present)

Children: Sterling and Haley Reeves Jr.

Education: University of Mississippi, J.D., 1973

Religion: Presbyterian

Other Facts

Barbour was widely commended for his response in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

He downplayed the effects of the 2010 BP oil spill on the Mississippi coast, and encouraged tourists to visit.

Was the valedictorian of the class of 1965 at Yazoo City High School.

His great-great-great-great grandfather, Walter Leake, was Mississippi’s third governor and one of Mississippi’s first two US senators.


1968 - Leaves the University of Mississippi to work as a field organizer for Richard Nixon’s presidential campaign.

1969-1970 - Works as director of the Mississippi state census.

1973-1976 - Serves as executive director of the Mississippi Republican Party.

1976 - Southeastern coordinator for Gerald Ford’s presidential campaign.

1981-1993 - Partner in the law firm Henry, Barbour & Decell.

1982 - Runs for a US Senate seat but is defeated by incumbent Democrat John Stennis.

1984 - Joins the Republican National Committee.

1985-1986 - US President Ronald Reagan’s special assistant for political affairs.

1986 - Reagan’s deputy assistant for political affairs.

1986 - Founds Barbour, Griffith & Rogers, a lobbying firm with offices in Washington, DC, and Yazoo City, Mississippi.

1988 - Serves as a campaign adviser for the presidential campaign of George H.W. Bush.

1993-1997 - Serves as the chairman of the Republican National Committee. During his two terms, Republicans win control of both the House and the Senate, for the first time in four decades.

1996 - His book “Agenda for America: A Republican Direction for the Future” is published.

November 4, 2003 - Is elected governor of Mississippi and becomes only the second Republican governor elected since 1876, during the Reconstruction era.

January 13, 2004-January 10, 2012 - Republican Governor of Mississippi.

November 6, 2007 - Is reelected governor.

2009 - Becomes chairman of the Republican Governors Association after South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford resigns.

January 10, 2012 - State documents show that in his last days in office, Barbour granted full pardons for 199 people, including 14 convicted murderers.

January 11, 2011 - During his final State of the State speech as governor, Barbour proposes that a civil rights museum be built in Mississippi.

January 2012 - Barbour joins the Mississippi law firm Butler, Snow, O’Mara, Stevens and Cannada, PLLC, and returns to the lobbying firm he co-founded in 1991, renamed BGR Group.

January 11, 2012 - Judge Tomie Green issues an injunction temporarily blocking the release of 21 inmates pardoned by Barbour.

March 8, 2012 - In a 6-3 ruling, the Mississippi Supreme Court finds Barbour’s pardons “may not be set aside or voided by the judicial branch.”

September 1, 2015 - Barbour’s memoir “American’s Great Storm: Leading through Hurricane Katrina” is published.

January 30, 2018 - The Associated Press reports that Barbour was arrested January 2 after trying to pass through security at the Jackson-Medgar Wiley Evers International Airport with a loaded handgun. Barbour says he did not know the weapon was still in his possession and that he will pay a fine.