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When Anne Holton '80 moves into the Virginia governor's mansion in January with husband Tim Kaine, she will be returning to her childhood home.

In 1969, her father, Linwood Holton, took office as Virginia's first Republican governor of the 20th century. Thirty-six years later, Kaine was elected as the state's next Democratic governor, and the first lady-elect is looking forward to her new role.

"It's exciting," she said. "This time my kids are about the age I was back then, and I get a new perspective on the job."

Holton was 12 years old when her father was elected governor. Linwood Holton, described by Anne as progressive for his day, helped integrate Virginia schools. In 1970, the family drew national attention when Linwood escorted Holton and her siblings into predominantly black Richmond public schools as part of court-ordered busing.

Despite supporting different political parties, Linwood and Kaine hold similarly moderate political views, Holton said.

"Anne has always been passionate about politics and the law," said former roommate Janice Weiner '80. "She came from a political family, though she strayed to the other side of the political fence from her father."

After growing up in Richmond, Holton said she was ready to leave Virginia for college. At the University, she was a member of Colonial Club, participated briefly in the sailing team and lived in Forbes College, known to her as "Princeton Inn."

"It was off the beaten path, but I loved it," she said. "Overall, I had a great experience at Princeton."

After graduating with a degree from the Wilson School in 1980, Holton went to law school at Harvard, where she met Kaine. She said they were both interested in public service at the time, but not necessarily in politics.

Kaine went on to become a city councilman and mayor of Richmond and later lieutenant governor of Virginia. Meanwhile, Holton worked as a Legal Aid lawyer in central Virginia from 1984 to 1998 before becoming a juvenile court judge in Richmond.

Because of her job, Holton was not allowed to join Kaine on the campaign trail this past year. Even when answering calls from reporters, she had to be careful to comply with ethics rules.

"Although I was unable to be present for the public campaigning, I found that it wasn't really a disadvantage," she said. "I talked to reporters a lot, helped my kids get involved in the campaign and provided emotional support for my husband."

After Kaine was elected, Holton decided she would retire from the juvenile court in mid-December.

She described her job as interesting, but said she is often frustrated when kids can't get the governmental and parental help they need.

"It's tough work, but it's also really rewarding when I get back what I put in," she said. "Plus, I feel I have gotten to play a real role in the community."

When Kaine takes the governor's oath in January, Holton plans to help Virginia youth in other ways. Though she does not have any specific projects planned, she said she wants to work with children in foster care because she feels a strong connection to underprivileged youth.

With her husband in office and more time to pursue her own projects, Holton said she sees the future as another "new adventure."

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