CNN Editorial Research
Here is a look at the life of former US Secretary of Energy and former Texas Governor Rick Perry.
Birth date: March 4, 1950
Birth place: Paint Creek, Texas
Birth name: James Richard Perry
Father: Joseph Ray Perry, a farmer
Mother: Amelia (Holt) Perry
Marriage: Anita (Thigpen) Perry (November 6, 1982-present)
Children: Sydney and Griffin
Education: Texas A&M University, B.S., 1972
Military Service: US Air Force, 1972-1977, Captain
Is an Eagle Scout.
Met his wife, Anita, in elementary school.
Is the longest serving governor in Texas history.
1972-1977 – Serves in the US Air Force flying transport planes.
1977 – Returns to Texas to live and work on his father’s farm.
1978 – Forms JR Perry Farms with his father.
1985-1991 – Member of the Texas House of Representatives as a Democrat from the 64th District.
1989 – Switches to the Republican Party.
1991-1999 – Commissioner of the Texas Department of Agriculture.
1999-2000 – Lieutenant Governor of Texas.
December 21, 2000 – Perry is sworn in as governor after George W. Bush resigns to become president of the United States.
November 5, 2002 – Perry is elected to a four-year term.
November 7, 2006 – Is reelected governor.
2008 – Perry’s book “On My Honor: Why the American Values of the Boy Scouts Are Worth Fighting For” is published.
November 2, 2010 – Perry is elected for a third term in office.
August 13, 2011 – Declares his candidacy for president during a speech in South Carolina.
July 8, 2013 – Announces that he will not run for reelection as Texas governor in 2014.
August 15, 2014 – A grand jury indicts Perry on charges of coercion of a public servant and abuse of his official capacity. He allegedly threatened to veto funding for a statewide public integrity unit run by Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg unless she resigned following her arrest on a drunk driving charge. She stayed in office, and he later vetoed the funding.
August 19, 2014 – Perry voluntarily appears at the Travis County Court house to be booked and fingerprinted and to have his mug shot taken. He pleads not guilty to charges of coercion of a public servant and abuse of official capacity. The next day he makes the first of six campaign style stops across New Hampshire.
January 15, 2015 – Delivers his farewell address as governor.
June 4, 2015 – Announces he is running for president at a rally in Addison, Texas.
July 24, 2015 – A Texas appeals court dismisses one of two criminal charges against Perry. The court agrees with the argument from Perry’s legal team that a Texas law concerning “coercion of a public servant” violates Perry’s First Amendment freedom of speech rights. The court is allowing a charge related to abuse of power to move forward.
September 11, 2015 – Suspends his campaign for the presidency.
January 25, 2016 – Perry endorses Ted Cruz.
February 24, 2016 – The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals drops charges against Perry alleging he abused his power while in office.
August 30, 2016 – Perry is revealed as one of the members of the upcoming 23rd season of reality television dance competition “Dancing with the Stars” on ABC.
September 27, 2016 – Is eliminated from “Dancing With The Stars.”
November 22, 2016 – Returns to “Dancing With The Stars” for the season finale. Perry dances with Vanilla Ice during a live performance of “Ice Ice Baby.”
July 26, 2017 – Perry’s office acknowledges that he was the target of a prank call on July 19. During the 20-minute call from Russian pranksters, real names Vladimir Krasnov and Aleksey Stolyarov, respectively, one pretends to be Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman.
February 5, 2019 – Is named the designated survivor for Trump’s second State of the Union address. As the one member of the Cabinet remaining outside the House chamber during the speech in case disaster strikes, Perry will remain in an undisclosed location.
October 10, 2019 – House Democrats issue a subpoena to Perry for documents related to the Trump administration’s contacts with Ukraine as part of the ongoing House impeachment inquiry.
October 17, 2019 – Perry says he plans to resign in a video posted to YouTube.
November 20, 2019 – Ambassador to the EU Gordon Sondland testifies that he, along with special envoy for Ukraine Kurt Volker and Perry, worked with Giuliani on Ukraine at the “express direction” of Trump and against their better judgment. Sondland also tells lawmakers that he had discussed the investigation in a July 19 email sent to several top US officials, including Perry. In response, the Department of Energy releases a statement denying Sondland’s claims, saying he “misrepresented both Secretary Perry’s interaction with Rudy Giuliani and direction the Secretary received from President Trump.”
December 1, 2019 – Perry resigns as US Secretary of Energy.
January 1, 2020 – Perry is appointed as a director of the general partner that controls Energy Transfer LP, a pipeline company.
February 17, 2021 – In a blog post on House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s website, Perry is quoted as saying “partly rhetorically,” that “Texans would be without electricity for longer than three days to keep the federal government out of their business.” Millions of Texans lost power as the state experienced a massive failure brought on by a historic freeze and a power grid that — unlike the other 47 contiguous states — is separated from the rest of the country and is not under federal regulatory oversight, which prevents Texas from being able to borrow power from other states.