(born May 28, 1960) is an American politician and member of the Republican Party. He previously represented the same district from 1995 to 2001, before being elected Governor of South Carolina, a position he held from 2003 to 2011.
Representative for South Carolina's 1st congressional district after winning a special election on May 7, 2013.
Sanford received a Bachelor of Arts degree in business from Furman University in 1983 and a Master of Business Administration degree from Darden Graduate School of Business Administration at the University of Virginia in 1988.
The seat had come open after four-term Republican incumbent Arthur Ravenel declined to seek re-election in his ultimately unsuccessful run for Governor.
Despite having never run for office before, Sanford finished second in a crowded primary behind Van Hipp, Jr, a former George H. Bush administration official and former Chairman of the South Carolina Republican Party.
In the House, he has been identified as a libertarian Republican, While it led to censure by the South Carolina General Assembly and his resignation as chairman of the Republican Governors Association, it did not result in Sanford's actual resignation from the governorship. Before his senior year of high school, Sanford moved with his family from Fort Lauderdale to the 3,000-acre (1,200 ha) Coosaw Plantation near Beaufort, South Carolina.
Sanford is also a real estate developer and a former medical administration officer in the U. Sanford attained the rank of Eagle Scout in the Boy Scouts of America.
First elected to Congress in 1994, Sanford pledged to serve no more than three terms and did not seek re-election in 2000.He left office in 2001 and was elected as the 115th Governor of South Carolina in 2002, defeating Democratic incumbent Jim Hodges, and was re-elected in 2006.