Sarah Louise Palin ( ˈpeɪlɨn (help·info); néeHeath; born February 11, 1964) is an American politician who served as Governor of Alaska from 2006 until her resignation in 2009. She was the Republican candidate for Vice President of the United States in 2008.
Palin was a member of the Wasilla, Alaska, city council from 1992 to 1996 and the city's mayor from 1996 to 2002. After an unsuccessful campaign for Lieutenant Governor of Alaska in 2002, she chaired the Alaska Oil and Gas Conservation Commission from 2003 until her resignation in 2004. She was elected Governor of Alaska in November 2006. Palin became the first female governor of Alaska and the youngest person ever elected governor of that state.
In 2008, Republican presidential candidate John McCain chose Palin as his running mate in that year's presidential election, making her the second female candidate and the first Alaskan candidate of either major party on a national ticket, as well as the first female vice-presidential nominee of the Republican Party. Since the defeat of the McCain-Palin ticket in the 2008 election, there has been speculation that she may run for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012.
On July 3, 2009, Palin announced she would not seek reelection as governor and that she was resigning, effective July 26, 2009, eighteen months prior to the completion of her first term. She cited ethics complaints that had been filed following her selection as running mate to John McCain as the reason for her resignation, saying the resulting investigations had affected her efficacy to govern the state.