Jane Beshear is the wife of Steve Beshear and served as First Lady of the Commonwealth of Kentucky from 2007-2015. In her many roles as a businesswoman, educator, community leader and First Lady of Kentucky, Jane Beshear, has dedicated her life to the service of others throughout the Commonwealth.
As a life-long equine enthusiast and advocate, she has served on the board of directors of Equestrian Events Inc., which organizes the Kentucky Rolex 3-Day Event, and the Kentucky Horse Park Foundation Board. She was a member of the World Equestrian Games Foundation Board, which successfully hosted in 2010 the first- ever FEI World Games outside of Europe, an event that attracted more than half-a-million attendees from around the globe.
Mrs. Beshear has been dedicated to addressing the rampant spread of breast cancer, which is the second- leading cause of cancer deaths among women in Kentucky. Her Horses and Hope initiative is increasing breast cancer awareness, education, screening and treatment referral among Kentucky's horse industry workers and their families. As First Lady, Mrs. Beshear hosted breast cancer survivors from across the Commonwealth at the Annual Celebration of Hope Luncheon each May.
As a former teacher, Mrs. Beshear has been passionate about education. To tackle the school dropout problem in the Commonwealth, she organized Graduate Kentucky: A Community Approach. Focusing on drop-out prevention and increasing graduation rates in Kentucky public schools, she conducted summits across the state to gather ideas toward ensuring that students of all ages are given every opportunity to succeed. She also pushed for legislation to raise the drop-out age for high school students in Kentucky from 16 to 18 years of age. To get kids excited about the world of reading, four times per year she would release a top-10 reading list for students with recommended books that fit a variety of age ranges.
In 2009, Mrs. Beshear launched the Governor's Garden effort to increase awareness about the benefits of locally grown produce and reducing our carbon footprint. Currently, there are seven Governor's Gardens throughout the Commonwealth. She also strived to make Kentucky more energy efficient through Green Team, a program that promotes sustainability, energy efficiency and environmental preservation, and creates a more sustainable future for all Kentuckians.
Mrs. Beshear has been a longtime volunteer board member of many local and state c1v1c organizations. She served as an ex-officio officer of the Kentucky Commission on Women and she served on the board of the Recovery Kentucky program, which assists those suffering from alcohol and drug addiction with leading normal, healthy lives.
As First Lady, she hosted the Shop and Share program every year, whereby volunteers collected donated goods from Kroger stores across the state to benefit Kentucky Domestic Violence Association shelters. The drive raised hundreds of thousands of dollars in goods and funding.
Mrs. Beshear actively promoted Kentucky's Adventure Tourism initiative, which highlights and seeks to expand outdoor adventure activities throughout the Commonwealth. Her support of Senate Bill 196, which passed in the 2008 legislative session, helped bolster the program.
Mrs. Beshear's motto is "Personal Responsibility." She has received numerous awards reflecting her active pursuit to lead by example and her commitment to serving Kentuckians.
Governor and First Lady have been married more than forty-five years and have two sons and three grandchildren.