Jane English

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Elizabeth Jane English

Arkansas State Senator
for District 34
Assumed office 
January 2013
Preceded by Linda Chesterfield

Arkansas State Representative
for District 42
In office
Preceded by Sandra Prater
Succeeded by Mark Perry

Born November 9, 1940
Lincoln, Nebraska, USA
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Col. Don C. English
Children Steven C. English

Rebecca English Parr

Residence North Little Rock, Pulaski County
Arkansas, USA
Alma mater Arkansas Tech University (Russellville)
Occupation Retired public policy administrator
Religion Protestant

Elizabeth Jane English, known as Jane English (born November 9, 1940), is a retired public policy administrator from North Little Rock in Pulaski County] Arkansas, who is a Republican state senator. Since 2013, she has represented a portion of Pulaski County in Senate District 34.[1][2] From 2009 to 2013, she was a member of the Arkansas House of Representatives.


English is a native of the capital city of Lincoln, Nebraska. She graduated in 1981 from Arkansas Tech University in Russellville, with a bachelor's degree in Economics/Finance. English and her husband, Col. Don C. English (born 1935), have a son, Steven C. English (born 1963), and a daughter, Rebecca English Parr (born 1967). She lists her religion as Protestant.[1] From 1984 to 1997, she was the senior project manager of the Arkansas Department of Economic Development.[1]

Political life

From 1998 to 2001, English was the executive director of the Fort Chaffee Public Trust. She was executive director of the Arkansas Manufacturers Association. From 2001 to 2004, she was executive director of the Arkansas Workforce Investment Board, a Cabinet position under Republican Governor Mike Huckabee. In 2005, English was an economics/workforce advisor to Republican Lieutenant Governor Winthrop Paul Rockefeller, the only son of former Governor Winthrop Rockefeller who announced a gubernatorial campaign to succeed Huckabee but was soon sidelined by cancer and death.[1]Upon Rockefeller's death, Asa Hutchinson unsuccessfully ran for governor in 2006 but was defeated by Democrat Mike Beebe. With Beebe term-limited, Hutchinson was elected governor in 2014 and 2018.

After three terms in the state House, English on November 6, 2012, was elected to the state Senate by a margin of 288 votes. With 18,220 votes (50. 4 percent), she defeated the Democrat Barry Hyde, who polled 17,932 ballots (49.6 percent). Hyde was an outgoing member of the Arkansas House from District 40. The District 34 incumbent, the African American Linda Chesterfield, was switched via redistricting to District 30.[3]

English serves on the Arkansas Legislative Council, the Legislative Joint Auditing Committee, and these Senate committees: (1) Children and Youth, (2) Judiciary, (3) Performance Review (chairman), and (4) State Agencies and Governmental Affairs (vice chairman).[1]She is a member of the conservative American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and its Tax and Fiscal Policy Task Force.[2]

As a House member, English opposed student dress codes and legislation to ban cell phones while driving through school properties. She voted to permit Bible instruction in public schools. She supported legislation requiring that driver's license testing be done in the English language.[4]

English opposes abortion, having voted to ban the practice after twenty weeks of gestation or whenever fetal heartbeat is determined; both measures required the override of the veto of Democratic Governor Mike Beebe. She opposes the inclusion of abortion in health-care measures..[4]

In 2013, Senator English joined the large majority of senators in amending state income tax rates. She voted to reduce the amount of weekly unemployment compensation benefits and to require the recipients to be screened for the use of narcotics. She voted successfully to override Governor Beebe's veto of a bill to require photo identification when one casts a ballot in Arkansas. She opposed legislation to make the office of prosecuting attorney in Arkansas nonpartisan. She voted to allow handguns to be carried on church properties and to forbid the release of information on the holders of concealed carry permits. English voted to allow university staff to carry concealed weapons. She voted for a bill to permit the sale of unpasteurized whole milk within the state. English did not vote on proposed legislation requiring a racial impact statement regarding crime bills.[4]

English narrowly won re-nomination to her second Senate term in the Republican primary held on March 1, 2016. She received 6,687 votes (51.2 percent) over the one-term state House member Donnie Copeland, a Pentecostal pastor also of North Little Rock, who polled 6,365 votes (48.8 percent).[5] She defeated the Democrat Joe Woodson, also of North Little Rock, in the November 8 general election.[6]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Jane English's Biography. votesmart.org. Retrieved on November 2, 2020.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Biography of the Honorable Jane English, Arkansas State Senator, arkleg.state.ar.us, December 7, 2013 material no longer accessible on-line.
  3. Arkansas State Senate elections, 2012. ballotpedia.org. Retrieved on November 2, 2020.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Jane English's Voting Records. votesmart.org. Retrieved on November 2, 2020.
  5. Copeland, Donnie. ourcampaigns.com. Retrieved on November 2, 2020.
  6. Arkansas State Senate 34. ourcampaigns.com. Retrieved on November 2, 2020.