John Hickenlooper is a lifetime entrepreneur who ran as a "dark horse" to become Mayor of Denver in 2003.
When he was inaugurated Governor of Colorado in 2011, having run on his history of collaboration for community good, he became the first Denver mayor to be elected governor in 150 years. He also became the first geologist to become a governor in the history of the nation, and the first brewer since Sam Adams in 1792.
Hickenlooper was born in Narberth, Penn. After losing his father, he was raised by his mother; he credits his approach to managing Denver's budget to her exceptionally frugal housekeeping, something she learned from living through the Depression.
Hickenlooper earned both a B.A. and M.A. from Wesleyan University and moved to Denver in 1981 to take a job as a geologist with Buckhorn Petroleum at the height of the city's oil boom. He lost his job when Denver's economy faltered in the 1980s and ultimately became a key player in revitalizing downtown Denver's LoDo district. He bought a neglected warehouse in the district's heart and, in 1988, founded what is now the Wynkoop Brewing Co. at 16th and Wynkoop. Often simply referred to as "the Wynkoop," the restaurant is seen by some as an anchor of downtown Denver.
B.A. - Wesleyan University (1974)
M.A. - Wesleyan University (1980)