A decision many consider to be a precursor to a 2016 presidential campaign, Rick Perry, Texas' longest serving governor, decided not to seek re-election in 2014. According to reports, Perry has been actively preparing himself to make a better run for the White House than he did in 2012.
Here are eight facts about Perry’s personal life to help voters better understand the man considered a 2016 GOP hopeful for president.
James Richard Perry was born on March 4, 1950, in Paint Creek, Texas, to farmer Joseph Ray Perry and his wife Amelia June Holt Perry.
Urgent: Do You Support Rick Perry for the GOP Nomination? Vote Here Now
Rick Perry was active in the Boy Scouts, earning the rank of Eagle Scout.
After graduating from Paint Creek High School in 1968, he entered Texas A&M University and earned a degree in animal science in 1972. During his time at Texas A&M, Perry was one of five “yell leaders,” or cheerleaders, and joined the Core of Cadets to earn a commission in the U.S. Air Force.
From 1972 through 1977, Perry served in the U.S. Air Force as a pilot of transport planes. He returned to Prairie Creek to work on his father’s farm, and the two formed JR Perry Farms in 1978.
Perry married his childhood sweetheart, Anita Thigpen, in 1982, who he met in grade school. The couple have two children — Sydney, born in 1986, and Griffin, born in 1983.
In 1984, Perry was elected as a Democrat from the 64th District in the Texas House of Representative, where he served until 1990. After switching to the Republican Party in 1989, he became Commission of the Texas Department of Agriculture, and in 1999 was elected as lieutenant governor of Texas under Gov. George W. Bush. When Bush became U.S. president, Perry was sworn in as state governor.
Urgent: Who Should the GOP Nominate in 2016? Vote Here Now
Perry has had two books published: "On My Honor: Why the American Values of the Boy Scouts Are Worth Fighting For" in 2008, and "Fed Up! Our Fight to Save American from Washington" in 2010. In August 2011, Perry announced his run for the Republican presidential nomination, bowing out of the race in January 2012.
A Methodist who grew up in the church, Perry and his family became members of Tarrytown United Methodist Church in the 1990s, which is the same church that George W. Bush attended in Austin.
In July 2013, Perry announced that he would not seek the gubernatorial re-election in 2014, and instead, retire on Jan. 20, 2015. According to USA Today, Perry stated at a news conference
, "The time has come to pass on the mantle of leadership." He added that he isn't opposed to the idea of possibly running again for the U.S. presidency.
Vote Now: Which Potential GOP Candidate Would You Support in 2016?
© 2021 Newsmax. All rights reserved.