Gov. Hickenlooper announces he, wife will separate

DENVER — Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper and his wife, First Lady Helen Thorpe, announced they will separate after 10 years of marriage in a joint statement released Tuesday.

Hickenlooper’s office released the statement, announcing what was called a “mutual and amicable” split with Thorpe. The end of the release stressed that neither party has partaken in an extramarital affair and that they had sought “extended counseling”.

“After years of marriage that have added tremendous love and depth to both of our lives, we have decided to separate,” the release stated. “We continue to have the utmost respect for each other, and we remain close friends.”

The release also stated that the split had nothing to do with the difficult events Colorado has faced this summer, such as the slew of wildfires and the Aurora theater tragedy.

The release went on to state that the family is still planning to embark on an annual family vacation this week and will continue to spend holidays and some meals together. The release even went so far as to state that social event coordinators should still invite both parties to gatherings as the couple “will not find it awkward.”

The chief concern of both Hickenlooper and Thorpe, according to the release, is their son, Teddy.

“We ask everyone to respect our privacy as we make this transition,” the release stated. “While public office made this announcement necessary, it will be the only statement we make on this private matter.”

Hickenlooper has reported he will be moving into the Governor’s Mansion from the couple’s private north Denver residence.

Unlike Hickenlooper, Thorpe, a journalist, has never sought the limelight — rather, she’s tried to avoid it.

In fact, in his long profile of Hickenlooper’s first year in office published in the August edition of 5280 magazine, executive editor Max Potter explained that he was allowed to embed with Hickenlooper for a year and given near-unfettered access on a couple of conditions, one of them being that he would not focus on Thorpe or Teddy Hickenlooper.

When Hickenlooper decided to run for governor in January of 2010 after then-Gov. Bill Ritter abruptly ended his reelection campaign, Thorpe was especially hesitant about seeking statewide office.

Hickenlooper, who’s being mentioned as a possible Democratic presidential candidate in 2016, is making his first trip to the early-voting state of New Hampshire next week.

See the full joint statement from Gov. Hickenlooper and his wife, Helen Thorpe here