(INDIANAPOLIS) – Indiana Secretary of State Connie Lawson announced today that she will step down as Secretary of State.
Secretary Lawson has notified Governor Holcomb and will submit a formal resignation once Governor Holcomb selects her successor and the successor is ready to serve.
“I have dedicated the last 32 years of my life to public service,” said Secretary Lawson. “I have served with all of my heart and soul. It has been an honor to serve, but it is time for me to step down.
“Like many Hoosiers, 2020 took a toll on me. I am resigning so I can focus on my health and my family. I will work with Governor Holcomb to ensure our next Secretary of State is up to the task and has the tools and resources to hit the ground running.”
Secretary Lawson was first appointed Secretary of State on March 16, 2012, by former Governor Mitch Daniels. She successfully ran for election in 2014 and 2018. She is the longest-serving Secretary of State in Indiana history and Indiana’s 61st Secretary of State.
As Indiana’s chief elections officer, she focused on ensuring the integrity and security of our state’s elections. She championed sweeping election reforms and led the effort to clean Indiana’s voter rolls. Thanks to her efforts, all Indiana counties now have access to cybersecurity tools to protect not only elections, but every county and the entire state from adversaries who seek to destroy our republic.
A tireless advocate for increasing Indiana’s financial literacy and protecting Indiana investors, Secretary Lawson educated Hoosiers about smart money decisions and fought for stringent penalties for white collar criminals. She directed substantial innovation and leveraged cutting edge technology to improve how businesses interact with government by leading the charge on the state’s business one-stop portal. INBiz is now a nationally recognized portal that serves as businesses’ single point of contact for registration, filing, reporting and making payments across state agencies.
Prior to serving as Secretary of State, Lawson served in the Indiana Senate for sixteen years, where she accomplished significant legislative success. Respected across the aisle, she quickly earned the admiration of her colleagues and made history in 2006 when she was selected as the first woman to serve as Majority Floor Leader in the Indiana Senate.
Before joining the Indiana Senate, Lawson served as Clerk of the Hendricks County Circuit Court for eight years. During her tenure, she was named elections administrator of the year by the Indiana State Election Board and clerk of the year by the Indiana Clerk’s Association, both in 1993.
As a public servant, Lawson has been a true inspiration to women in government, an agent of change for Indiana counties and a determined advocate for the prevention of diseases that would rob us of our loved ones. In addition to her public work, she and her husband Jack own Lawson & Company, an auctioneer and real estate company.
Governor Holcomb released the following statement.
“Indiana’s own Iron Lady, Secretary of State Connie Lawson, has long defined what true public service and leadership is and ought to be all about. Throughout her time in the county, legislative and statewide office, she set the standard for commitment, composure, class, and credibility. No matter the year or issues of the day, citizens could bank on Connie Lawson leading the way and inspiring others to follow.
“A trailblazer, the holder of state records, even serving alongside three Governors as Secretary of State, through it all, Connie has remained universally respected by veterans and the next generation alike.
“I’ll forever count myself fortunate and proud to say, ‘I served with Connie Lawson.’
“And, while she’ll no longer be just down the hall from my Statehouse office, I know that she will continue to be a trusted advisor and great friend.
“I wish her and her husband Jack and their entire family happy trails upon her retirement and congratulate her on her immediate induction into the Hoosier Pantheon of all-time great public servants.”
Indiana Republican Party Chairman Kyle Hupfer issued the following statement on Secretary of State Connie Lawson’s announcement that she’s retiring:
“Connie Lawson has been one of the most dedicated, effective, and admired Secretaries of State in Indiana history. For nearly a decade, Hoosiers have trusted her leadership and during her term Indiana has become a national role model in running safe and secure elections. Faced with unprecedented election obstacles in 2020, Secretary Lawson successfully navigated the challenges of the pandemic to ensure Hoosiers could safely exercise their right to vote and be confident in the outcomes. Connie Lawson will be missed in the Statehouse, but I know her contributions to our state will not end with her upcoming retirement.
Secretary Lawson certainly leaves big shoes to fill. I’m confident that her replacement will be able to continue the legacy of election integrity that has been engrained here in Indiana. I look forward to working closely with Governor Holcomb as he makes his decision on this critical appointment.”