Montana Secretary of State
Main: (406) 444-2034
Business Services: (406) 444-3665

History of the Office

The current secretary, Corey Stapleton, took office in January 2017 and is the 21st person to hold the office since Montana became a state in 1889. Frank Murray holds the record for the longest term in office: 24 years, from 1957 to 1981. The record for the shortest term goes to Robert Hawkins, who served for not quite two months in 1927.

In 1992, Montanans passed a constitutional initiative (CI 64) establishing limits on how long legislators and elected executive officers can hold office. As a result, beginning with Secretary of State Bob Brown, no one may serve longer than eight consecutive years in the position.​​

Corey Stapleton
January 2017 – Present
Republican
Linda McCulloch
January 2009 – January 2017
Democrat
Brad Johnson
January 2005 – 2009
Republican
Bob Brown
January 2001 – January 2005
Republican
Mike Cooney
January 1989 – January 2001
Democrat
Verner Bertelsen
April 1988 – January 1989
Republican
(Appointed)
  Jim Waltermire
January 1981 – April 1988
Republican
(Died while in office)
Frank Murray
January 1957 – January 1981
Democrat
S.C. Arnold
June 1955 – January 1957
Republican (Appointed)
Sam W. Mitchell
January 1933 – June 1955
Democrat
(Died while in office)
William E. Harmon
January 1929 – January 1933
Republican
John W. Mountjoy
April 1928 – January 1929
Democrat
William Powers
May 1927 – April 1928
Party affiliation unknown(Resigned)
Robert N. Hawkins
March 1927 – April 1927
Democrat
(Resigned)
Charles T. Stewart
January 1917 – March 1927
Republican
(Impeached, resigned)
Adelbert M. Alderson
January 1913 – December 1916
Democrat
Thomas M. Swindlehurst
August 1911 – January 1913
Democrat
Abraham N. Yoder
January 1905 – August 1911
Republican
(Died while in office)
  George M. Hays
January 1901 – January 1905
Democrat
T.S. Hogan
January 1897 – January 1901
Populist
Louis Rotwitt
November 1889 – January 1897
Republican