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Jeff Colyer

Politician, doctor, fifth generation Kansan, 49th lieutenant governor. Born: June 3, 1960, Hays, Ellis County, Kansas. Married: Ruth Gutierrez, 1991.  

Jeffrey William Colyer was born in Hays to James Daniel and Lorene Colyer, on June 3, 1960. He attended Thomas More Prep in Hays. He earned a bachelor’s degree in economics at Georgetown University in 1981; master’s degree in international relations from Clare Hall, Cambridge, in 1982; and a doctor of medicine degree from the University of Kansas in 1986. From 1986 to 1994 he completed residency training at Washington Hospital Center, University of Missouri-Kansas City, and the International Craniofacial Institute in Dallas, Texas.

He married Ruth Gutierrez in 1991; they have three daughters.

In 1994 Dr. Colyer opened practices as a plastic surgeon Johnson County and Kansas City, Missouri. He has volunteered, as a surgeon, in war zones in Afghanistan, Iraq, the Balkans, Libya, and Africa. He served as an International Medical Corps volunteer and was the only surgeon in southern Rwanda during the genocide that killed 800,000 people.

Colyer served as a White House Fellow in international affairs under Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush. He was elected to the Kansas House of Representatives in 2006, where he served one term, then to the Kansas State Senate in 2008. He was Sam Brownback’s running mate in the 2008 gubernatorial election. Since 2009 he has served as Kansas’ 49th lieutenant governor.

Entry: Colyer, Jeff

Author: Kansas Historical Society

Author information: The Kansas Historical Society is a state agency charged with actively safeguarding and sharing the state's history.

Date Created: September 2017

Date Modified: September 2017

The author of this article is solely responsible for its content.