Jane O'Meara Sanders

Jane O’Meara Sanders: 10 Facts About Jane O’Meara Sanders, Bernie Sanders’ Wife

Jane O’Meara Sanders is Bernie Sanders’ wife of 27 years. While Bernie is busy campaigning against Hillary Clinton as a Democratic presidential candidate, his wife has an impressive resume herself.

What are some facts about Bernie Sanders’ wife? To sum it up, Jane O’Meara Sanders is an advocate for the disabled and economically challenged.

Learn 10 interesting facts about Mrs. Sanders.

1. Jane and Bernie have been married for 27 years. Between them, they have four children and seven grandchildren. Jane met Bernie when he was elected Burlington mayor in 1981. Ever since, O’Meara Sanders has played a crucial role in his public and political life.

2. While growing up, O’Meara Sanders lived just 15 blocks away from her future husband in Brooklyn, Bloomberg reports. She attended a Catholic parochial school. Mrs. Sanders was an excellent student and won a scholarship to an all-girls Catholic high school.

3. After high school, she enrolled at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. She studied sociology and child development.

4. Jane O’Meara was the youngest of Bernadette and Benedict O’Meara’s five children, and the only girl. She’s also nine years younger than Bernie Sanders.

5. Jane’s father suffered from disability in her childhood, she told the Burlington Free Press in 1996. According to the report, “her social consciousness was born watching how money—or lack of it—affected her father during a chronic illness.” Her mother was forced to work as well. Times were so challenging that Jane’s mother “convinced the kindergarten to take me at 3 years old. By 4, I was the teacher’s assistant. Those years instilled in us the feeling we could get through anything.”

6. Jane is one of her husband’s closest campaign advisers. Jane admits that it’s difficult balancing being a political adviser and a wife, ABC News reports. “I think since it has always been that way from the beginning of our relationship,” she said. “We’ve always talked issues. We’ve always creatively solved things together.”

Jane O'Meara Sanders
Jane O’Meara Sanders plays a key role in her husband’s campaign as a political advisor (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky).

7. Jane has a doctorate in leadership and policy studies. She has served the state of Vermont through volunteer efforts for years.

8. Jane worked as a bank teller and grocery store clerk. During that time, she demonstrated against the Vietnam war. The family moved to Virginia — “my plowing-fields-growing-everything-wok-cooking period,” she described it as being.

9. Jane served as Burlington College’s president from 2004 to 2011. In an interview with Vermont Women, Mrs. Sanders was involved in relocating the campus from a 16,000-square-foot area to one of 77,000-square-feet. It was a tactical decision in helping make the university a top-rate educational institution.

Jane O’Meara Sanders was under scrutiny when critics suggested she was responsible for the school struggling to meet payroll, according to Seven Days. She was accused of over-leveraging the institution by “borrowing $10 million to finance a risky campus expansion, assuming she could make payments by increasing enrollment and donations during an economic downturn.”

Bernie Sanders’ wife was never formally charged, but resigned in 2011.

Jane O'Meara Sanders
Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders and his wife, Jane O’Meara Sanders, at a campaign rally at Prince William Fairgrounds in Manassas, Virginia (AP Photo/Cliff Owen).

10. Jane was married to David Driscoll before she married Bernie Sanders. The couple moved to Virginia, then later to Vermont.

Can you imagine Jane O’Meara Sanders as the nation’s First Lady? Bernie Sanders’ wife has a lot of experience in the public eye and has proven she’ll dedicate herself wholeheartedly to the American people if she becomes the next First Lady.

[Photo Credit: Erik Kabik Photography/ MediaPunch/IPX]