Sen. Tim Kaine will address the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia on Wednesday night.
Kaine, who was announced as Hillary Clinton’s running mate last week, has an impressive political resume. Kaine is a former mayor of Richmond, a former Virginia governor, a former Democratic National Committee chairman and now Virginia’s junior U.S. Senator.
His wife, Anne Holton is no stranger to politics. Her father, Abner Linwood Jr. served as Virginia governor between 1970 and 1974. Although Linwood is a Republican, Kaine has said his father-in-law has a strong influence in his life, and has praised him for his contributions while serving as governor.
Here’s what you need to know about Abner Linwood Holton Jr.:
1. He Was Elected as the First Republican Governor of Virginia Since Restoration in 1969
Holton was the Republican candidate for governor in 1965, but was defeated by Democrat Mills E. Godwin Jr. In 1969, Holton won the gubernatorial election and served as a Republican governor between 1970 and 1974 in Virginia.
As governor, Holton made a push for civil rights. His inaugural speech called for an end to racial discrimination in Virginia. During his time in office, he increased employment of blacks and women in state government. He is also credited with creating the Virginia Governor’s Schools Program in 1973, providing the first state funds for community mental health centers, and supporting environmental efforts.
His daughter, Anne Holton told the Roanoke Free Press in 2012 that her whole life “has been intertwined with politics since when I was little and my family has looked on it as a positive opportunity to be of service and to have a little fun on the way.”
When Kaine was governor, his wife Anne returned to the home where she spent four years of her childhood during her father’s time in office.
2. He Was Integral in Integrating Virginia’s Public Schools
In 1970, when desegregation was a controversial issue in Virginia, Holton voluntarily placed his children in the mostly-black Richmond public schools, garnering much attention.
The governor’s highly publicized stance against racial segregation won him support in the black community, but wasn’t as well-received in the Virginia Republican party, who denied him the nomination for a Senate seat in 1978.
Following his term as governor, Holton served one year in the Nixon Administration as the Assistant Secretary of State for Congressional Relations.
3. He Is Kaine’s ‘Political Hero’
Kaine calls his father-in-law, who became the first Republican governor of Virginia when he was elected in 1969, his political hero.
Kaine has praised Holton’s ability to integrate Virginia’s public schools within his first year of office.
“When he integrated the schools he did it as an an act of courage, as an act of principal, and he was basically frozen out of electoral politics there after in Virginia,” Kaine told C-SPAN earlier this month.
“But now, he’s 92 years old, he’ll be 93 in September, and people look at what he and his wife…they look at what they did and they say ‘wow, now that was a guy who had a tough time, had to make a tough call, and he made it the right way.’ And he changed Virginia from a state that was looking backward, to a state that started to look forward.”
Kaine has said he “played an amazingly important role in the life of this commonwealth and in the life of this country. And he did it in a courageous way, at a political cost to himself.”
4. He Is a Graduate of Harvard Law
Linwood is a 1949 graduate of Harvard Law School. Prior to his political career, he was an attorney in Roanoke, Virginia.
His daughter, Anne followed in his footsteps by also attending Harvard Law, which is where she met her future husband, Tim Kaine.
Kaine earned his B.A. in economics from the University of Missouri, before attending Harvard Law School, where he met his wife. The two met when they were in a study group together. Holton baked cookies in an attempt to gain his attention, according to U.S. News and World Report.
The couple married on November 24, 1984 at St. E’s altar, a year after Kaine graduated from Harvard with a Juris Doctor and was admitted to the Virginia bar. The Kaines eventually settled in Richmond, and still live in the same Northside neighborhood where they moved as newlyweds more than 30 years ago.
5. His Daughter, Anne Has Also Pursued a Career in Public Service
After graduating with a B.A. from Princeton and a Harvard law degree, Holton worked as a legal aid lawyer serving low-income families. She worked as a juvenile and domestic relations district court judge from 1998 until 2005 when Kaine was elected governor.
Holton has described herself as a “life-long advocate for children and families in Virginia.” She was active in reforming Virginia’s foster care system alongside her husband, and served as a child welfare consultant with the Annie E. Casey Foundation to assist other states.
Holton also helped to initiate education programs for Virginia’s foster youth and alumni. In 2008, she worked with the Virginia Foundation for Community College Education to establish the Great Expectations program. The initiative worked with “campus coaches” on community college campuses to improve access to higher education for foster children in the state. She served as the program’s director in 2013. She recently resigned as Virginia’s Secretary of Education following the selection of her husband, Tim Kaine as Hillary Clinton’s running mate.
Holton says she is “a proud product of Virginia’s public school system.”
During a TEDxRVA talk Holton said:
“I got a great education in the city, and I’ve always been an advocate for it,” said Holton, who called her talk a “love letter to the Richmond city public schools.”
All three of her and Kaine’s children attended public schools in Richmond.