Peter Shumlin, 81st Governor of Vermont and Menschel Senior Leadership Fellow

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Read the reflection article by A. Taylor Thomas

Fixing the Health Care System from Within

Wednesday, September, 25, 2019

Peter Shumlin served three terms as the 81st US Governor of Vermont, from 2011 to 2017. Prior, Shumlin represented the Windham County district in the Vermont Senate from 1993 to 2003 and 2007 to 2011, and as elected president of the senate for 10 of those years. Shumlin also served as a member of the Vermont House of Representatives, from 1990 to 1993.

As Governor, Shumlin established Vermont as a leader on progressive policies, making the state the first to guarantee universal pre-kindergarten education for all 3 and 4-year-old children, pass a mandatory GMO labeling law, and achieve near universal health care coverage with the lowest rate of uninsured in the country. Under his leadership, Vermont consistently ranked among the top states in solar energy jobs per capita and enacted a number of laws to boost renewable energy production and combat climate change. Because of Vermont’s leadership, Governor Shumlin was invited by President Obama to the Paris Climate Summit to push for a global climate agreement.

Governor Shumlin’s tenure was also marked by his leadership during times of crisis. He helped Vermont recover from the devastation of Tropical Storm Irene. He also turned the nation’s eyes to the problem of opiate and heroin addiction by dedicating his 2014 State of the State Address to the issue and pushing for policies to treat addiction.

Shumlin is co-director, along with his brother, of Putney Student Travel, which partners with National Geographic Student Expeditions and New York Times Journeys, sending high school age students on educational programs and service projects across the globe. He is also a partner in several real estate companies that provide housing and commercial space in Southeast Vermont.