Larry J. Hopkins
Larry Hopkins.png
Hopkins c. 1981
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Kentucky's 6th district
In office
January 3, 1979 – January 3, 1993
Preceded byJohn B. Breckinridge
Succeeded byScotty Baesler
Member of the Kentucky Senate
In office
Member of the Kentucky House of Representatives
In office
Personal details
Larry Jones Hopkins

(1933-10-25)October 25, 1933
Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
DiedNovember 15, 2021(2021-11-15) (aged 88)
Lexington, Kentucky, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
Carolyn Pennebaker
(m. 1956)
Children3, including Josh
EducationMurray State University
Military service
Branch/service United States Marine Corps
Years of service1954–1956

Larry Jones Hopkins (October 25, 1933 – November 15, 2021) was an American politician who represented Kentucky's 6th congressional district in the United States House of Representatives from 1979 to 1993. He was the Republican nominee for governor of Kentucky in 1991 and lost to Brereton C. Jones. He was the father of actor Josh Hopkins.

Early life and education

Hopkins was born in Detroit and raised in Kentucky, the son of Louise Jones and James Glenn Hopkins.[1] He attended public schools in Wingo, Kentucky and Murray State University.


Hopkins served in the United States Marine Corps from 1954 to 1956 and was a stockbroker with Hilliard Lyons. Hopkins served as Fayette County clerk before serving as the Kentucky House of Representatives from 1972 to 1976 and the Kentucky Senate from 1976 to 1978. He served in the United States House of Representatives from January 3, 1979, to January 3, 1993. During his tenure in Congress, Hopkins was a member of the United States House Committee on Armed Services, where he was a principal House cosponsor of the Goldwater–Nichols Act.[2] In 1991, Hopkins ran for governor and defeated Larry Forgy in the Republican primary.[3] Hopkins lost the general election to Brereton C. Jones who polled 540,468 votes (64.7%) to Hopkins' 294,452 (35.3%).[4][5]

Hopkins did not seek re-election to the House in 1992, due in part to his loss in the race for governor and also because of his role in the House banking scandal.[6] Hopkins was later exonerated of all charges. He later served as director of the Tobacco Division of the Agricultural Marketing Service in the G. H. W. Bush administration. He also worked as a lobbyist for Lott & Hopkins LLC Sonny Callahan & Associates LLC.[7]

Personal life

Hopkins was married to Carolyn Pennebaker in 1956 and had two daughters and a son, Josh Hopkins, who later became an actor.[8] Hopkins died on November 15, 2021, at the age of 88.[9]


  1. ^ "Larry Hopkins Obituary (1933 - 2021) - Lexington, KY - Lexington Herald-Leader".
  2. ^ "Statement on Signing the Goldwater-Nichols Department of Defense Reorganization Act of 1986". Ronald Reagan. Retrieved 2021-11-17.
  3. ^ "JONES, HOPKINS IN KENTUCKY RACE FOR GOVERNOR". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2021-11-17.
  4. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2009-10-22. Retrieved 2009-10-26.((cite web)): CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  5. ^ Ap (1991-05-29). "Kentucky's No. 2 Wins Race For Democratic Nomination". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2021-11-17.
  6. ^ Walsh, Edward (1991-11-04). "CHECK-BOUNCER STUMBLES". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2021-11-17.
  7. ^ "Revolving Door: Larry J Hopkins Employment Summary | OpenSecrets". Retrieved 2021-11-17.((cite web)): CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  8. ^ Congress, United States (1985). Official Congressional Directory. U.S. Government Printing Office.
  9. ^ Former Kentucky Congressman Larry Hopkins dead at 88
U.S. House of Representatives Preceded byJohn Breckinridge Member of the U.S. House of Representativesfrom Kentucky's 6th congressional district 1979–1993 Succeeded byScotty Baesler Party political offices Preceded byJohn Harper Republican nominee for Governor of Kentucky 1991 Succeeded byLarry Forgy