Like all elected governors of Illinois since Joel Matteson in 1854, Gov. Jim Edgar (R-Charleston) was honorary chair of the Illinois State Society of Washington, DC during his term of office and he attended ISS events in DC with his wife Brenda Edgar in the 1990s. Gov. Jim Edgar was raised in Charleston, Illinois. He graduated from Charleston High School, attended Wabash College in Indiana for one year before graduating from Eastern Illinois University, also in Charleston. Jim Edgar worked as a legislative assistant to State Senate Republican Leader W. Russel Arrington and to Speaker of the House William Blair before service as an elected member of the Illinois House of Representatives. He served as the Illinois Secretary of State from 1981 to 1991 and as the 38th Governor of Illinois from 1991 to 1999.