Ralph Shearer Northam (born September 13, 1959) is an American politician and physician serving as the 73rd Governor of Virginia since January 13, 2018. A pediatric neurologist by occupation, he was an officer in the U.S. Army Medical Corps from 1984 to 1992. Northam, a member of the Democratic Party, served as the 40th Lieutenant Governor of Virginia from 2014 to 2018 prior to winning the governorship against Republican nominee Ed Gillespie in the 2017 election.
The Virginia Department of Education’s Superintent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow resigned last week. Republican Gov. Glenn Youngkin last January appointed Balow, who had previously been Wyoming’s State Superintent for Public Education, to the position before he took office.
The Washington Post reported Balow in her March 1 resignation letter said she was “grateful and humbled” to have been appointed.
Youngkin, for his part, thanked Balow for “her work in advancing the governor’s education agenda to empower parents and restore excellence in education.” Youngkin last September announced plans to revise the guidelines for transgender and nonbinary students that his predecessor, Democrat Ralph Northam, signed into law in 2020.
The Virginia Joint Commission on Administrative Rules late last year voted to formally object to Youngkin’s proposal that has yet to be implemented.