10 Things You Didn't Know About Mike Huckabee

Interesting facts about the former governor of Arkansas.

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1. Michael Dale Huckabee was born Aug. 24, 1955, in Hope, Ark.

2. Huckabee was the first man in his family to graduate from high school. He got a scholarship to Ouachita Baptist University in Arkadelphia, Ark., and received his bachelor's degree in religion in only 2½ years.

3. After graduating from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Huckabee worked as a Baptist pastor for 12 years. He had started preaching on weekends while he was still in college.

4. Huckabee and his wife, Janet, have three children: John Mark, David, and Sarah.

5. He was lieutenant governor of Arkansas in 1996, when then Gov. Jim Guy Tucker left office following his Whitewater-related convictions for mail fraud and conspiracy. Huckabee eventually assumed the governorship, but his inauguration was delayed for four hours when Tucker had second thoughts about resigning.

6. Huckabee enjoys fishing and in 1997 was the American Sportfishing Association's Man of the Year. In 2005, a lake in Hope, Ark., was renamed the Mike and Janet Huckabee Lake.

7. After being diagnosed with weight-related health problems in 2003, Huckabee embraced nutrition and exercise. He ultimately lost more than 100 pounds and wrote a book about weight loss called Quit Digging Your Grave With a Knife and Fork. He also became an avid runner. In 2005, he finished the Little Rock Marathon in 4 hours 38 minutes. Joining him in the race: his friend Gov. Tom Vilsack of Iowa.

8. As governor, Huckabee made public health a focus, starting the Healthy Arkansas initiative to encourage fitness. His own staffers participated in the program by wearing pedometers and competing to see who could walk the most steps in a month. The winner, transportation policy analyst Lucretia Norris, got to use the chief of staff's parking space for 10 days.

9. Huckabee plays bass guitar in the classic rock band Capitol Offense. The group has performed at the Arkansas State Fair and has opened for REO Speedwagon, Grand Funk Railroad, and the Charlie Daniels Band.

10. Some of his favorite books are To Kill a Mockingbird, The Complete Guide to Running, Who Moved My Cheese? and How Should We Then Live?

Sources:

  • Associated Press
  • Biography Resource Center Online
  • Contemporary Authors Online
  • Hachette Book Group USA
  • States News Service