Bachelor of Business Administration, Pacific Lutheran University, Tacoma, 1984. Juris Doctor, University Puget Sound School Law, Seattle, 1987.
Private business owner, 1991—2000. Member Alaska State House of Representatives, 1992—1996, Alaska State Senate, 1996—2000, co-chair finance committee. Director Alaska governmental relations ConocoPhillips Company.
Partner Patton Boggs, LLP, Anchorage, 2005—2006. Advisor on commercial and policy issues to Governor Sarah Palin, 2006—2007. Lieutenant governor State of Alaska, Juneau, Alaska, 2007—2009, governor, since 2009.
Member Telecommunications Information Council, Energy Council, Western Legislation Timber Task Force, Bayshore-Klatt Community Council, Uniform Code Revision Commission, Long Range Finance Planning Commission. Member of National Federation Indiana Business.
Married Sandy Parnell. Children: Grace, Rachel.