Lecturers at the Jefferson Educational Society

Howard Dean

Howard Dean was born on November 17, 1948, in New York City. He worked as a physician for many years while pursuing a career in politics as a Democrat. His political roles included working as an elected official in the Vermont House of Representatives, serving as Vermont's lieutenant governor and Vermont's governor from the 1980s through early 2000s. Dean ran unsuccessfully for the 2004 Democratic presidential nomination. He served as chairman of the Democratic National Committee in 2005 and continues to participate in Democratic activities.

Dean grew up alongside his three brothers and attended high school at Saint George's Boarding School in Newport, Rhode Island. He received his undergraduate degree from Yale University in 1971 and his M.D. from the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in 1978.

Dean was a practicing physician from 1981 to 1991, during which time he also became actively involved in politics. A democrat, Dean was elected to the Vermont House of Representatives in 1983, where he served until 1986. He then served as Vermont’s Lieutenant Governor from 1986 to 1991 and as Governor from 1991 to 2002.

By leading Vermont with firm fiscal discipline, Dean paid off an inherited $70 million deficit for the state. He also succeeded in guaranteeing health coverage for children and signed into law one of the country’s toughest managed-care consumer protections. However, Dean's governorship is best remembered for the passage of a civil union law in 2000, which gave same-sex couples the same rights as heterosexual couples. In 2003, he announced his candidacy for the 2004 Democratic presidential nomination.

A member of the Congregationalist church, Dean resides with his wife, Judith Steinberg-Dean, and two children in Burlington, Vermont.