John Joyce Gilligan (born March 22, 1921) is a Democratic politician from the U.S. state of Ohio who served as its 62nd governor.
Gilligan was born in Cincinnati, Ohio. He graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 1943 and the University of Cincinnati in 1947, serving in between in the U.S. Navy during World War II in the Atlantic, Pacific and Mediterranean as a destroyer gunnery officer. He was awarded a Silver Star for gallantry in action at Okinawa.
After the war, Gilligan returned to Cincinnati to teach literature at Xavier University. He served on the Cincinnati City Council from 1953 to 1963. He was elected to the United States House of Representatives for district 1 in 1964, serving from 1965 to 1967. Gilligan lost his re-election bid in 1966 to Republican Robert Taft Jr. after the Ohio General Assembly redrew his district to be more Republican. In 1968, Gilligan defeated sitting U.S. Senator Frank J. Lausche in the Democratic primary; however, he lost in the general election to Republican William B. Saxbe.
Gilligan won the election for the Governorship of Ohio in 1970, defeating Republican Roger Cloud, and serving from 1971 to 1975. Gilligan lost the governorship to Republican James A. Rhodes in a tight race in 1974. He subsequently served as the administrator of USAID from 1977 to 1979 and taught at the University of Notre Dame and elsewhere.
In 1999, at age 78, Gilligan was elected to the Board of Education of the Cincinnati Public Schools. He has stated that he will not run for re-election when his current term expires in 2007
Gilligan is the father of four children, including Kathleen Sebelius, the current governor of Kansas. They constitute the first father-daughter pair of governors in the United States.