Hall of Distinguished Alumni
Martha Layne Collins
in Bagdad, Kentucky, December 7, 1936. Educator. Governor, Commonwealth of Kentucky.
University of Kentucky, B.S., 1959.
Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky in 1983, she is the third woman in
the history of the United States to be elected Governor in her own right. She
is only the sixth woman to serve as Governor of any state.
teacher, she began her political career in 1971, when she became the Central
Kentucky coordinator of women's activities for Wendell Ford's successful gubernatorial
campaign. He then appointed her the Democratic national committee woman from
Kentucky. In 1972, she again assisted a political winner, Walter "Dee"
Huddleston, in his senatorial campaign. Then she served as Democratic party
1975, she was elected clerk of the Court of Appeals. Due to a judicial reform
amendment to the state Constitution, she is the last person to be elected clerk
of the Court of Appeals and the first person to be clerk of the Kentucky Supreme
brought her teaching skills to the clerk's office. After finding that there
was no information available to students and the general public about the court
changes, she compiled and published a brochure on the Supreme Court. She also
contacted the Department of Education so that the two state agencies could work
together to develop a teacher's manual on Kentucky's court changes. The manual
was placed in schools and libraries across the Commonwealth.
is past President of the Woodford County Jaycee-ettes, a member of the Kentucky
Commission on Women, the Business and Professional Women's Club, the UK National
Alumni Association, and the Order of the Eastern Star.
was named 1976 Woman of Achievement by the Woodford County BPW and was chosen
in 1977 by Governor Julian Carroll to serve as Kentucky Executive Director of
the Friendship Force.
1979, she was elected Kentucky's Lieutenant Governor, and in 1983, was elected
Governor of the Commonwealth of Kentucky.
In 1984, she was selected to Chair
the Democratic National Convention in San Francisco, California.
Martha Layne Collins was named
to the Hall of Distinguished Alumni on May 10, 1985.