Birthdate: Jan. 14, 1947
Birth Place: Grundy, VA, United States
Residence: New Bern, NC
Bev Perdue was born in Grundy, Va. She earned a bachelor's from the University of Kentucky, and she attended the University of Florida where she earned a master's and a doctorate degree.
Perdue was a schoolteacher in Kentucky, Florida and Georgia. She worked as a human services director, geriatric director and geriatric health care consultant.
Perdue was elected to the state House in 1986 and to the state Senate in 1990. She became co-chairwoman of the state Senate Appropriations Committee in 1995.
She was elected lieutenant governor in 2000 and served two terms before winning election to the governorship in 2008. She is the state's first female governor.
Perdue and her husband, Bob, live in New Bern, N.C. She has two children from a previous marriage and two stepchildren.
Bev Perdue decided to cut short her trailblazing political career by declining to run for re-election as North Carolina's governor in 2012, four years after she was elected the state's first female chief executive.
Perdue announced in February 2012 that she wouldn't run because she said a re-election bid would "only further politicize the fight to adequately fund" the state's public schools with the Republican-led Legislature. But fellow Democrats also worried her sagging poll numbers, a campaign finance probe and a stubbornly high unemployment rate in North Carolina would drag all of them down in a key battleground state for President Barack Obama as the Democratic National Convention came to Charlotte in September 2012.
Already hampered by a recession and budget shortfalls that curtailed some costly initiatives she touted during her 2008 campaign, Perdue took it on the chin politically after the 2010 elections when the GOP won majorities in both General Assembly chambers for the first time since 1870.
Perdue issued more than twice the number of vetoes during the 2011-12 legislative session than had been stamped during the previous 14 years in which North Carolina governors have had veto authority. But Republicans managed to persuade enough Democrats to complete several overrides, including two on the state budget.
Perdue's key difference with Republican legislators came on taxes and education spending. She and the Democratic-controlled Legislature agreed in 2009 to close a $4.6 billion budget gap by raising the state sales tax by a penny, requiring an income tax surcharge on the highest wage earners and increasing taxes on cigarettes and alcohol.
Republicans refused to extend temporary sales and income tax increases in 2011 and focused more on spending cuts she and other Democrats argued led to layoffs for thousands of educators. But the Democratic-penned budget of 2009 also led to public employee layoffs.
Perdue was dogged by an investigation of her 2008 campaign committee into previously undisclosed flights on private airplanes leading up to her victory. The State Board of Elections fined The Bev Perdue Committee $30,000 in August 2010 for failing to report more than 40 flights.
Her campaign blamed the flight issues on inadequate and sloppy monitoring efforts while Perdue was running for office but said she did nothing illegal or improper.
A local prosecutor investigated what happened and ultimately obtained indictments against four people _ two Perdue campaign donors and two campaign aides _ on charges of obstruction of justice, causing false campaign reports to be filed, or both.
One of the four _ the campaign's former finance director _ accepted a felony plea in December 2011. The prosecutor said Perdue wasn't the focus of his investigation.
The negative publicity canceled out her successes to pass ethics and government reform changes with the Legislature in 2010 and to depoliticize road-building decisions at the state Department of Transportation.
Perdue ran for governor after climbing a political ladder that was largely off limits to women when she was first elected to the state House in 1986. She was elected the state's first female lieutenant governor in 2000 and elected governor in 2008 after a grueling general election race that was the closest in the state since 1972.
Her Republican opponent in 2008, now former Charlotte Mayor Pat McCrory, cleared the GOP field in 2012 and was expected to give Perdue an even tougher challenge had Perdue run for- re-election.
Source: Associated Press