Lawyers who pursue political careers are fairly common, but business leaders somewhat less so. Mitt Romney, who parlayed a career in private equity into a successful run as Massachusetts governor, is the exception that proves the rule. Ditto for Michael Bloomberg, the founder of Bloomberg Businessweek parent Bloomberg L.P. and New York City's mayor since 2002.

Both Romney and Bloomberg launched their political careers after earning MBAs, in both cases from Harvard Business School. To find out just how many MBAs have ascended to prominent political positions, we searched the president's cabinet, Congress and all 50 state governors and turned up 34 former business school students.

Harvard is the only business school that has produced a U.S. President (George W. Bush) and it is the most frequently mentioned alma mater on our list with four alumni. The University of Chicago's Booth School of Business, Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management, and the University of Detroit's Mercy business school are next with two alums each. The group is evenly split between Democrats and Republicans and includes 21 representatives, seven senators, and the governors of Delaware, Maine, Michigan, New Hampshire, and West Virginia.

Note: This list is ordered by alma mater according to Bloomberg Businessweek's 2012 ranking of full-time MBA programs. Alumni from unranked schools are listed alphabetically.

Michael Novatkoski contributed to this report.

Photograph by Getty Images

Lawyers who pursue political careers are fairly common, but business leaders somewhat less so. Mitt Romney, who parlayed a career in private equity into a successful run as Massachusetts governor, is the exception that proves the rule. Ditto for Michael Bloomberg, the founder of Bloomberg Businessweek parent Bloomberg L.P. and New York City's mayor since 2002.

Both Romney and Bloomberg launched their political careers after earning MBAs, in both cases from Harvard Business School. To find out just how many MBAs have ascended to prominent political positions, we searched the president's cabinet, Congress and all 50 state governors and turned up 34 former business school students.

Harvard is the only business school that has produced a U.S. President (George W. Bush) and it is the most frequently mentioned alma mater on our list with four alumni. The University of Chicago's Booth School of Business, Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management, and the University of Detroit's Mercy business school are next with two alums each. The group is evenly split between Democrats and Republicans and includes 21 representatives, seven senators, and the governors of Delaware, Maine, Michigan, New Hampshire, and West Virginia.

Note: This list is ordered by alma mater according to Bloomberg Businessweek's 2012 ranking of full-time MBA programs. Alumni from unranked schools are listed alphabetically.

Michael Novatkoski contributed to this report.

Photograph by Getty Images

MBAs in Government

MBAs at the Pinnacle of Political Power
MBAs at the Pinnacle of Political Power

Lawyers who pursue political careers are fairly common, but business leaders somewhat less so. Mitt Romney, who parlayed a career in private equity into a successful run as Massachusetts governor, is the exception that proves the rule. Ditto for Michael Bloomberg, the founder of Bloomberg Businessweek parent Bloomberg L.P. and New York City's mayor since 2002.

Both Romney and Bloomberg launched their political careers after earning MBAs, in both cases from Harvard Business School. To find out just how many MBAs have ascended to prominent political positions, we searched the president's cabinet, Congress and all 50 state governors and turned up 34 former business school students.

Harvard is the only business school that has produced a U.S. President (George W. Bush) and it is the most frequently mentioned alma mater on our list with four alumni. The University of Chicago's Booth School of Business, Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management, and the University of Detroit's Mercy business school are next with two alums each. The group is evenly split between Democrats and Republicans and includes 21 representatives, seven senators, and the governors of Delaware, Maine, Michigan, New Hampshire, and West Virginia.

Note: This list is ordered by alma mater according to Bloomberg Businessweek's 2012 ranking of full-time MBA programs. Alumni from unranked schools are listed alphabetically.

Michael Novatkoski contributed to this report.

Photograph by Getty Images
Jack Markell
Jack Markell

Democratic Governor, Delaware


MBA: University of Chicago Booth School of Business

Photograph by Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg
Todd Young
Todd Young

Republican Representative, Indiana


MBA: University of Chicago Booth School of Business

Photograph by Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call
John Garamendi
John Garamendi

Democratic Representative, California


MBA: Harvard Business School

Photograph by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
Herb Kohl
Herb Kohl

Democratic Senator, Wisconsin


MBA: Harvard Business School

Photograph by Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg
John Lynch
John Lynch

Democratic Governor, New Hampshire


MBA: Harvard Business School

Photograph by Elise Amendola/AP Photo
Karen Mills
Karen Mills

Administrator, Small Business Administration


MBA: Harvard Business School

Photograph by Mark Wilson/Getty Images
David Scott
David Scott

Democratic Representative, Georgia


MBA: University of Pennsylvania Wharton School

Photograph by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
Bob Dold
Bob Dold

Republican Representative, Illinois


MBA: Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management

Photograph by Gilbert R. Boucher II/Daily Herald/AP Photo
John Hoeven
John Hoeven

Republican Senator, North Dakota


MBA: Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management

Photograph by Alex Wong/Getty Images
Rick Snyder
Rick Snyder

Republican Governor, Michigan


MBA: University of Michigan Ross School of Business

Photograph by Jeff Kowalsky/Bloomberg
Pete Stark
Pete Stark

Democratic Representative, California


MBA: University of California, Berkeley, Haas School of Business

Photograph by Jeff Chiu/AP Photo
Jim Matheson
Jim Matheson

Democratic Representative, Utah


MBA: UCLA Anderson School of Management

Photograph by Jim Urquhart/AP Photo
Steven Stivers
Steven Stivers

Republican Representative, Ohio


MBA: Ohio State University Fisher College of Business

Photograph by Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call
Cathy McMorris Rodgers
Cathy McMorris Rodgers

Republican Representative, Washington


MBA: University of Washington Foster School of Business

Photograph by Win McNamee/Getty Images
William Keating
William Keating

Democratic Representative, Massachusetts


MBA: Boston College Carroll School of Management

Photograph by Steven Senne/AP Photo
David Schweikert
David Schweikert

Republican Representative, Arizona


MBA: Arizona State University Carey School of Business

Photograph by Ralph Freso/AP Photo
Kent Conrad
Kent Conrad

Democratic Senator, North Dakota


MBA: George Washington University School of Business

Photograph by Cliff Owen/AP Photo
Dan Boren
Dan Boren

Democratic Representative, Oklahoma


MBA: University of Oklahoma Price College of Business

Photograph by Bill Clark/QC Roll Call/Getty Images
Vern Buchanan
Vern Buchanan

Republican Representative, Florida


MBA: University of Detroit Mercy College of Business Administration

Photograph by Bill Clark/QC Roll Call/Getty Images
Thomas Carper
Thomas Carper

Democratic Senator, Delaware


MBA: University of Delaware Lerner College of Business & Economics

Photograph by Scott J. Ferrell/Congressional Quarterly/Getty Images
Henry Cuellar
Henry Cuellar

Democratic Representative, Texas


MBA: Texas A&M International University Sanchez School of Business

Photograph by Charles Dharapak/AP Photo
Jim DeMint
Jim DeMint

Republican Senator, South Carolina


MBA: Clemson University College of Business & Behavioral Science

Photograph by Alex Wong/Getty Images
Michael Enzi
Michael Enzi

Republican Senator, Wyoming


MBA: University of Denver Daniels College of Business

Photograph by Chris Maddaloni/QC Roll Call/Getty Images
Bill Flores
Bill Flores

Republican Representative, Texas


MBA: Houston Baptist University School of Business

Photograph by Bill Clark/QC Roll Call/Getty Images
Ruben Hinojosa
Ruben Hinojosa

Democratic Representative, Texas


MBA: University of Texas - Pan American College of Business Administration

Photograph by Tom Williams/QC Roll Call/Getty Images
Paul LePage
Paul LePage

Republican Governor, Maine


MBA: University of Maine Maine Business School

Photograph by Craig Dilger/The New York Times via Redux
Kevin McCarthy
Kevin McCarthy

Republican Representative, California


MBA: California State University, Bakersfield School of Business & Public Administration

Photograph by Tom Williams/QC Roll Call/Getty Images
Steve Pearce
Steve Pearce

Republican Representative, New Mexico


MBA: Eastern New Mexico University College of Business

Photograph by Bill Clark/QC Roll Call/Getty Images
Gary Peters
Gary Peters

Democratic Representative, Michigan


MBA: University of Detroit Mercy College of Business Administration

Photograph by Jeffrey Sauger/Bloomberg
Scott Rigell
Scott Rigell

Republican Representative, Virginia


MBA: Regent University School of Business & Leadership

Photograph by Alex Wong/Getty Images
Loretta Sanchez
Loretta Sanchez

Democratic Representative, California


MBA: American University Kogod School of Business

Photograph by Alex Gallardo/AP Photo
John Thune
John Thune

Republican Senator, South Dakota


MBA: University of South Dakota Beacom School of Business

Photograph by Alex Wong/Getty Images
Earl Tomblin
Earl Tomblin

Democratic Governor of West Virginia


MBA: Marshall University College of Business

Photograph by Randy Snyder/AP Photo
Michael Turner
Michael Turner

Republican Representative, Ohio


MBA: University of Dayton School of Business Administration

Photograph by Michael Appleton/The New York Times via Redux