Asa Hutchinson was elected as the 46th Governor of Arkansas on November 4, 2014, winning 55% of the vote.
Raised on a farm near Gravette, Arkansas, Asa Hutchinson is no stranger to dedication, perseverance, and hard work. During law school, he started dating his college sweetheart Susan and hitchhiked to see her in Memphis where she was teaching. Although not making the best impression with his mode of transportation, they will be celebrating 40 years of marriage this year. Susan and Asa have four children and five grandchildren.
Asa and Susan love every corner of Arkansas. From the timberlands in the South to the hill country in the North and from the rice fields of the Delta to the small communities in the Ozarks, Arkansas is home sweet home. After graduating from the University of Arkansas Law School, Asa practiced law in Bentonville. At the age of 31, he was appointed by President Ronald Reagan as the youngest United States Attorney in the nation. As United States Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas, Asa successfully prosecuted drug traffickers, white-collar criminals and a terrorist group known as the Covenant, Sword and Arm of the Lord (CSA), a white supremacist organization in northwest Arkansas. After a three-day standoff between law enforcement and the CSA, Asa personally helped negotiate a peaceful surrender of James Ellison and other members of the Neo-Nazi group.
Asa has been a cornerstone for the Arkansas Republican Party for many years. Through his leadership as State Party Chairman in the early 1990’s, the state GOP grew and initiated numerous reforms that became the foundation for today’s two party system. He championed efforts in election reform, ultimately leading to public funding for primary elections and easier access to the polls. Asa also challenged the status quo in Arkansas from the unconstitutional formation of a partisan ethics commission to congressional districts that diluted minority votes.
Asa practiced law all over the state of Arkansas for 21 years before being elected to the U.S. Congress in 1996. While in Congress, Asa was an early supporter of out patient treatment centers for our veterans in Arkansas and concentrated on greater highway funding for the state. Asa also supported tax reductions for the first time in 16 years and a balanced budget. In 2001, when Asa left Congress, our nation had its last balanced budget.
After being elected to his third term in Congress, President George W. Bush appointed Asa as Director of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in 2001. In January, 2003, Asa was confirmed by the U.S. Senate to be the first Under Secretary of the newly-created Department of Homeland Security.
Asa has spent the majority of his career in the private sector as a small business owner, lawyer and entrepreneur. He serves on the board of directors of two companies and as advisor to numerous others. Asa’s record in business and public service gives him a unique background to serve the people of Arkansas as Governor.