Veterinarian wins Nebraska governor’s race

Dr. Jim Pillen, the Republican candidate for Nebraska governor, won by an overwhelming majority this November, garnering nearly 60% of the vote against the Democratic and Libertarian nominees.

Dr. Pillen
Dr. Jim Pillen

A Nebraska native, Dr. Pillen grew up on a farm in Platte County and raised pigs with his father, Dale Pillen. Dr. Pillen played football at the University of Nebraska in the late ’70s and earned his bachelor’s in animal science. After graduating in 1983 from Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine, the governor-elect opened a small animal practice and a swine consulting practice in Nebraska.

He also owned a commercial swine operation with his father. In 1993, Dr. Pillen opened Pillen Family Farms. Ten years later, he expanded the family business with the addition of DNA Genetics, a swine genetics company that currently employs more than a thousand people.

Since 2012, Dr. Pillen has been a member of the University of Nebraska Board of Regents, holding the position of vice chairman in 2018 and chairman in 2020.

He will be the only veterinarian currently serving as a governor in the United States.