Espy, Mike, 1953-

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Alphonso Michael Espy (born November 30, 1953) is an American politician who served as the 25th United States Secretary of Agriculture from 1993 to 1994. He was both the first African American and first person from the Deep South to hold the position. A member of the Democratic Party, Espy previously served as the U.S. Representative for Mississippi's 2nd congressional district from 1987 to 1993.

In March 2018, Espy announced his candidacy for the United States Senate seat being vacated by Thad Cochran. Espy lost in the November 6 nonpartisan special election before facing Republican Cindy Hyde-Smith in a November 27 runoff. Espy was defeated by Hyde-Smith, but garnered more than 46 percent of the vote in what was the closest U.S. Senate election in Mississippi since 1988. He was the Democratic nominee again in the 2020 election but lost by ten percentage points against Cindy Hyde-Smith in a rematch.

Espy was born in Yazoo City, Mississippi. He is the grandson of Thomas J. Huddleston Sr., founder of the Afro-American Sons and Daughters, a fraternal society that operated the Afro-American Hospital, a leading provider of health care for Black people in the state from the 1920s to the 1970s. Espy attended Howard University in Washington, D.C., and was active in student politics, holding several elective positions. He earned his Juris Doctor from Santa Clara University School of Law in California in 1978.

Espy was an attorney with Central Mississippi Legal Services between 1978 and 1980 and was later the Assistant Secretary of State to Mississippi Legal Services. From 1980 to 1984, he was the Assistant Secretary of the State to the Public Lands Division. Espy was an Assistant State Attorney General from 1984 to 1985.

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn Records of the Task Force on National Health Care (Clinton Administration), 1993 - 1994. Kelcey Kintner's Files, 1993 - 1994 William J. Clinton Presidential Library & Museum
referencedIn Records of the Council on Environmental Quality (Clinton Administration), 1993 - 2001. Kathleen McGinty's Files, 1993 - 1998 William J. Clinton Presidential Library & Museum
referencedIn Photographs of the White House Photograph Office (Clinton Administration). 1/20/1993 - 1/20/2001. Photographs Relating to the Clinton Administration. 1/20/1993 - 1/20/2001. Photograph of President William J. Clinton and Secretary of Agriculture Mike Espy on Telephones in the Oval Office
referencedIn Records of the Office of Speechwriting (Clinton Administration), 1993 - 2001. Michael Waldman's Files, 1995 - 2000 William J. Clinton Presidential Library & Museum
referencedIn Records of the Office of the Press Secretary (Clinton Administration), 1993 - 2001. Dee Dee Myers' Files, 1993 - 1995 William J. Clinton Presidential Library & Museum
referencedIn Voices from the Food Revolution: People Who Changed The Way Americans Eat, An oral history project conducted by Judith Weinraub, 2009-2011 Fales Library & Special Collections
referencedIn Records of the Task Force on National Health Care (Clinton Administration), 1993 - 1994. Jack Lew's Files, 1993 - 1994 William J. Clinton Presidential Library & Museum
referencedIn Thomas, Margaret Sandahl. Thomas, Margaret Sandahl, photographs, 1880-2006. University of Texas Libraries
referencedIn Records of the Office of the Public Liaison (Clinton Administration), 1993 - 2001. Alexis Herman's Files , ca. 1993 - ca. 1996 William J. Clinton Presidential Library & Museum
referencedIn Records of District Courts of the United States, 1685 - 2009. Civil Case Files, 1938 - 2000 National Archives at Kansas City
referencedIn Thomas (Margaret Sandahl) Photographs 98-035, 98-131, 98-223; 99-190; 2007-159; 2007-225; 2008-082., 1880 - 2006 Dolph Briscoe Center for American History
creatorOf Espy, Mike, 1953-. Mike Espy : commercials , 1986-1988. University of Oklahoma, Political Community Archives
referencedIn Photographs of the White House Photograph Office (Clinton Administration). 1/20/1993 - 1/20/2001. Photographs Relating to the Clinton Administration. 1/20/1993 - 1/20/2001. Photograph of President William J. Clinton Posing with Members of His Administration at the Congressional Black Caucus Dinner
referencedIn Guide to the Daily Worker and Daily World Photographs Collection, 1920-2001 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
referencedIn Thomas, Margaret Sandahl, 1941-. Thomas, Margaret Sandahl, photographs, 1880- University of Texas Libraries
referencedIn Nash, Jere. Nash & Taggart collection, 2004-2007. University of Mississippi
referencedIn United States. Dept. of Agriculture. U.S. Department of Agriculture oral history, 1993-2000 : manuscripts, 1993-2000. National Agricultural Library, NAL
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Clinton, Bill, 1946- person
associatedWith Communist Party of the United States of America. corporateBody
alumnusOrAlumnaOf Howard University corporateBody
alumnusOrAlumnaOf Santa Clara College of Law) corporateBody
associatedWith Thomas, Margaret Sandahl. person
associatedWith Thomas, Margaret Sandahl, 1941 person
associatedWith Thomas, Margaret Sandahl, 1941- person
memberOf United States. Congress. House person
associatedWith United States. Dept. of Agriculture. corporateBody
associatedWith University of Oklahoma. Political Commercial Archive. corporateBody
Place Name Admin Code Country
Jackson MS US
District of Columbia DC US
Santa Clara CA US
Yazoo City MS US
Subject
Television advertising
Advertising, political
Occupation
Lawyers
Representatives, U.S. Congress--Mississippi
Cabinet officers--20th century.--United States
State Government Employee
Function

Person

Birth 1953-11-30

Male

Americans

English

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