North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple announced last week he would not campaign for reelection in 2016.
Dalrymple, 66, has been active in North Dakota politics since 1985 when he was elected to the state legislature in Cass County.
He became governor in 2010 and won a reelection bid in 2012 for another term.
He said he believes it is time to end his career and spend more time doing leisure activities.
Under Dalrymple’s tenure, North Dakota become the nation’s second leading oil-producing state. He has championed tax cuts and the state’s rainy-day fund.
For the first time in 16 years, the governor’s seat will be an open race. No politicians have announced a gubernatorial bid.
Dalrymple’s term officially ends Dec. 15, 2016.