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Gina M. Raimondo

Governor of Rhode Island

Featured / Keynote

On January 6, 2015, Gina M. Raimondo became the 75th Governor of Rhode Island and the state’s first female governor.

Governor Raimondo’s top priority is to rebuild the middle class and create opportunity for everyone—and she works every day to advance the lives and livelihoods of all Rhode Islanders. She believes that, in order to move our state forward, we need to shake up the status quo and help people build the skills they need to succeed in the 21st century. As Governor, she’s kick-started the state’s economy to better attract entrepreneurs, create jobs, encourage existing businesses to grow, and foster innovation throughout state government.

Since her swearing-in, Rhode Island has replaced every private-sector job lost during the Great Recession and attracted top companies like GE Digital, Johnson & Johnson, Virgin Pulse, and the Cambridge Innovation Center to plant flags here and help grow our state economy. The Governor has also made critical investments in existing Rhode Island companies like A.T. Cross to help them stay and expand in-state. When she first took office, Rhode Island had the highest unemployment in the county—now, it’s ranked 28th for jobs.

Knowing that great jobs need talented people—and wanting those jobs to go to Rhode Islanders—Governor Raimondo has made advancements in education a centerpiece of her economic growth plans. She made new investments in early education, tripling the number of public pre-kindergarten classes and working to ensure that every child can attend all-day kindergarten. Thanks to her CS4RI initiative, Rhode Island is poised to become the first state with computer science classes at every single public school, and every high-school student can now take the SATs for free.

Ocean State students have more opportunities to thrive than ever before, including new offerings for career readiness, workforce training, and more. In 2017, the Governor also proposed a higher-education program to guarantee two years of free college or community college to every in-state student, making Rhode Island a national leader on college affordability.

Governor Raimondo also understands that infrastructure matters—and that businesses and families won’t relocate to a state with crumbling roads and unsafe bridges. In 2016, she led the state in the creation of RhodeWorks, which spurred action rather than kicking the can down the road. After awarding $174 million in contracts that year and more than $200 million in 2017, RhodeWorks has begun or completed repairs on nearly 120 bridges, created 800 direct jobs, and saved the state over $900 million in the next ten years. It’s a visible sign that we’re rebuilding Rhode Island together.

These achievements continue Governor Raimondo’s pragmatic work as the General Treasurer of Rhode Island, where she spearheaded landmark pension reform that put the Ocean State’s fiscal house back in order. By tackling the state’s unfunded $7 billion pension liability, she ensured Rhode Island would be able to make investments in its future success—in its economy, education, infrastructure, and more.

A Smithfield native, Governor Raimondo currently resides in Providence with her husband Andy Moffit and their two children, Ceci and Tommy. She graduated magna cum laude from Harvard and later won a Rhodes Scholarship to Oxford University, where she earned a doctorate. After graduating from Yale Law School, she clerked for US District Judge Kimba Wood, served as senior vice president at Village Ventures, and co-founded Point Judith Capital. Prior to running for office in 2010, she was involved in dozens of successful start-up companies across Rhode Island.

Recent Honors and Awards

  • Recognized by Fortune as one of the World’s 50 Greatest Leaders, 2016
  • Recipient of the Yale Law School Lifetime Achievement Award, 2016
  • Received the “New Englander of the Year” award from the New England Council for leadership and impact on New England’s quality of life and economy, 2016
  • Honored with the Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau’s Local Ambassador Award for bringing the 2017 National Governors Association Conference to Rhode Island
  • Recipient of Brown University Alpert Medical School W. W. Keen Award for leadership in developing academic partnerships designed to support academic research and discoveries that can cure disease and improve lives, 2015
  • Received the Girl Scouts Southeastern New England’s Leading Women Award, 2015
  • Previously served as Vice Chair of the Board of Directors of Crossroads Rhode Island, playing a key role in launching a new homeless shelter for women.
  • Former trustee at Women and Infants Hospital and Chair of its Quality Committee, and board member of Family Service of Rhode Island and LaSalle Academy