State Capitol

Secretaries of State since statehood

From statehood until 1975, the office of Secretary of State was an elective office. In 1975, the passage of State Question 511 amended the Constitution, and provided for the gubernatorial appointment of the Secretary of State for a four year term to run concurrently with the term of the Governor. The appointment requires the consent of the Senate. The amendment became effective in January of 1979. State Question 436 passed in 1966 and declared the Secretary of State eligible to serve successive terms.

Secretary of State Term
Bill Cross (D) November 16, 1907
Thomas Smith (D) Appointed August 6, 1910, after Cross' death
B. F. Harrison (D) January 9, 1911
H. G. Oliver (D) Appointed January 2, 1915, after Harrison resigned
S. L. Lyon (D) January 11, 1915
Joe Morris (D) January 13, 1919
R. A. Sneed (D) January 8, 1923
Graves Leeper (D) January 10, 1927
R. A. Sneed (D) January 6, 1931
Frank C. Carter (D) January 15, 1935
C. C. Childers (D) January 9, 1939
Frank C. Carter (D) January 11, 1943
Katherine Manton (D) Appointed November 8, 1946, after Carter resigned
Wilburn Cartwright (D) January 13, 1947
John D. Conner (D) January 8, 1951
Andy Anderson (D) January 10, 1955
John D. Conner (D) January 12, 1959
Wm. N. Christian (D) Appointed August 31, 1959, after Conner's death
James M. Bullard (D) January 14, 1963
John Rogers (D) January 9, 1967
John Rogers (D) January 11, 1971
John Rogers (D) January 13, 1975
Jerome Byrd (D) Appointed July 1, 1975, after Rogers resigned
Jeannette B.Edmondson (D) February 1, 1979
Jeannette B.Edmondson (D) January 10, 1983
Hannah D. Atkins (D) January 12, 1987
John Kennedy (D) January 14, 1991
Glo Henley (D) Appointed February 2, 1994, after Kennedy resigned
Tom J. Cole (R) January 9, 1995
Mike Hunter (R) Appointed March 16, 1999
Kay Dudley (R) Appointed October 16, 2002, after Hunter resigned
M. Susan Savage (D) January 16, 2003
V. Glenn Coffee (R) January 10, 2011
Michelle R. Day (R) Appointed February 1, 2013, after Coffee resigned
Larry V. Parman (R) Appointed March 1, 2013, after Day resigned
Chris Benge(R) Appointed Nov 8, 2013, after Parman resigned