Jack Evans (D.C. politician)

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Jack Evans
Jackevansdc.jpg
Personal details
Born (1953-10-31) October 31, 1953 (age 60)
Nanticoke, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Political party Democratic
Alma mater University of Pennsylvania
University of Pittsburgh

Jack Evans (born October 31, 1953) is an American Democratic politician, lawyer, and insurance executive from Nanticoke, Pennsylvania who has represented Ward 2 of Washington, D.C. on the Council of the District of Columbia since 1991.[1] Evans is the D.C. Council's longest serving lawmaker.[2] Evans entered the 2014 mayoral race but lost in the Democratic primary.[3]

Early life, education, and family[edit]

Evans was born in Nanticoke, Pennsylvania [4] and was raised by his parents who were a florist and school teacher. He received an economics degree[5] with honors (cum laude) from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 1975, and a law degree from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law[5] in 1978. He began practicing law in Washington D.C. at the Securities and Exchange Commission in the Division of Enforcement and currently serves as Of Counsel at Patton Boggs law firm.,[6] a position for which he receives $190,000 in yearly compensation in addition to his $125,000 council salary.[7] During his time on the D.C. Council, Evans also worked as an insurance executive for Central Benefits Mutual Insurance Co. a position which paid $50,000 a year and that Evans tried to obscure from reporters.[8]

Evans' first wife, Noel, died in September 2003 after a long battle with breast cancer.[9][10] Over the next seven years, Evans raised his triplets [11] and on September 18, 2010, he married Michele Price, a former staffer of late Wyoming Republican Senator Malcolm Wallop.[12] They currently live in Georgetown with their six children (Katherine, John, Christine, Sam, Maddy, Jack), live-in nanny, and golden retriever, Kelly.[9] His 3,600 square foot rowhouse was built in 1876, remodeled in 2011 by architect Dale Overmyer, and provides each child with their own room.[13] In 2001, Evans bought another house in Delray Beach, Florida, renovated it, and vacations there.[14]

Public service[edit]

Evans began a two-decade long career in public service when elected to the D.C. Council in 1991 in a Special Election to replace John A. Wilson, who had run for chairman and won. He had previously served as an ANC Commissioner, representing ANC 2B in Dupont Circle. Evans was elected to serve as Chair of the ANC Commission from 1989-1990.[15] He is currently the councilmember of Ward 2, including: Chinatown, Logan Circle, Blagden Alley, Dupont Circle, Sheridan-Kalorama, Foggy Bottom/West End, Georgetown, Burleith, Hillandale and Downtown Washington (including the White House and the mall).[15]

From 2001-2003, Evans served as Chair of Foundry United Methodist Church's annual AIDS fundraiser, raising more than $400,000.[citation needed]

In 2005, an Evans-controlled political action committee, “Jack PAC,” legally accepted unlimited donations from some of the city’s most connected lobbyists, developers, and business types. A billboard company that benefited from Evans-sponsored legislation gave $10,000. Evans disclosed that PAC money paid for travel expenses of a friend, an art gallery owner. Evans and the PAC maintained there was nothing improper about a PAC paying his friends’ way and eventually he paid for the trip out of his own pocket.[4]

Evans has regularly used his constituent service funds to purchase tickets to sporting events.[16] Other officials have said that they use the funds to help needy constituents with rent and utility bills as well as unexpected expenses, such as funerals.[16] An inquiry by the Washington Post, identified that $135,897 was spent on sporting events and $101,564 was directed toward charitable organizations over the last 22 years.[16] In 2013, despite a probe by the Office of Campaign Finance to see whether regulations were broken, no actions were deemed illegal.[17] As a major advocate of local sports, Evans used available resources for the benefit of little league teams and other constituents that cannot afford to attend sports events.[18]

On the City Council, Evans serves as Chair of the Council's Committee on Finance and Revenue, which oversees the District's finances and tax policy. The city has balanced its budget for 15 consecutive years and improved from a B- to a AAA bond rating. Evans authored the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and the Schedule H reforms.[15]

Evans served at the 1992, 1996, 2000, 2004, 2008, 2012 Democratic National Conventions, as well as 2004 Howard Dean DC Co-Chair; 1992 & 1996 Bill Clinton DC Co-Chair; 2008 Hillary Clinton DC Co-Chair; and DC Democratic Party Treasurer from 1988-1991. He also served as Board Chair for both the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority/WMATA (1994 and 1997) and the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments/COG (1995). During his 22 years on the DC Council he held the Vice Chair position from 1999-2010.[15]

Campaign For Mayor[edit]

Evans announced his campaign for mayor on June 8, 2013, in front of Le Diplomate, a restaurant on 14th Street.[19] "This area used to be known for drug dealing and prostitution," Evans mentioned as he acknowledged that though the city is home to people from all walks of life, the District has common goals and needs. During his candidacy announcement speech, Evans asserted that his “vision is necessary in order to establish Washington as one of the great cities of the world." [20]

Evans appointed Josh Brown as his campaign manager. Brown has said that his strategy is to plaster the city with Evans signs to make "this city to look like it barfed up Jack Evans." [21][22] Campaign aide Scott Bishop, who has been called "the Poster King" for his work on earlier campaigns, is responsible for organizing the signage effort.[23] [24] Bishop previously pleaded guilty to criminal charges in the efforts to gather signatures for the reelection of Mayor Anthony Williams. [25]

Evans was accused of "Election-year politicking" after he would not sign a bill that would bury the city's power lines. Evans's committee delayed vote on the bill after Mayor Gray refused to reappoint William N. Hall, a partner at the Venable law firm and longtime friend of Evans, to the Events D.C. board. Evans indicated that he was merely “analyzing the legislation carefully” and that he wanted the process to move “as quickly as possible.” [26]

When interviewed, Evans praised fellow candidate and incumbent mayor Vincent Gray and could not find one reason to criticize him. Evans emphasized that he is not running a campaign against Gray, but rather running a campaign to become mayor of the District of Columbia.[27]

The Evans campaign has touted its use of volunteers, while some volunteers were actually given small monthly stipends.[28] As of January 27, 2014, the Jack Evans for Mayor campaign turned in petition signatures in excess of 10,000, the largest collection of signatures by a mayoral candidate in the 2014 race.[29]

In the fundraising reporting period ending December 10, the campaign had raised over $1,000,000, making Evans the top fundraising candidate and the first to break the million-dollar mark.[30] Evans has received "bundled" donations thanks to a loophole that allows business owners to use companies under their control to make multiple donations to a single candidate. In Evans' reporting filings, there were more than 11 examples of donations from multiple corporate entities that share the same address.[31] Evans previously voted in favor of a bill to outlaw the practice but it will not take effect until 2015.[31] In response to the fundraising news, Evans comments that “the support I am receiving throughout the city at public events and private homes is solid,” and that his “campaign is about bringing quality jobs and more economic opportunities to residents in every part of this city—that message is resonating with voters.” [30]

Evans finished in fourth place with 4,039 votes. His campaign spent $1,430,430.44 at a cost per vote of $354.15. Winner Muriel Bowser spent $32.08 per vote and incumbent Vincent Gray spent $34.31 per vote.[32]

Political Positions[edit]

LGBT rights

Evans supports gay rights. According to Lou Chibbaro Jr. of The Washington Blade, "Evans has been the lead sponsor or co-sponsor of virtually every LGBT- supportive bill that has come before the legislative body." In 2009, Evans co-sponsored the bill that legalized same-sex marriage in D.C. The nation's capital became the first jurisdiction in the United States south of the Mason–Dixon line to allow same-sex couples to marry.[33]

In 2014 ratings by the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance, Evans was ranked third among DC mayoral candidates for his support to gay rights issues.[34]

Jobs and Economic Development

Evans supported the Verizon Center which opened in 1997 in his Ward, which became home to the Washington Wizards, Washington Mystics and Washington Capitals as they moved from suburban Maryland to downtown Washington D.C. He played a key role in the negotiations that brought the Montreal Expos franchise to Washington, D.C. in 2005. Discussing the November 2004 vote to finance a stadium for the Washington Nationals, then- Mayor Anthony Williams said, "I think that history will judge that Jack Evans played a huge role in this."[35][36]

Evans backed the Walter E. Washington Convention Center construction.[19] Evans recused himself from a 2009 vote on public financing for a new convention center hotel but did not file a written note explaining the reason. Evans claimed that the connection between Marriot International, which would operate the hotel, and his other interests did not require him to file a written recusal. Though the DC Council's General Counsel found no wrongdoing, journalists identified other possible connections between Evans, his law firm, and financier ING.[37] Evans called journalist John Hanrahan a "fucking idiot" after he started the website stealalittle.com to highlight the case.[38] Evans was called on to apologize by local media for his outburst.[39]

Evans opposed the Georgetown University campus plan, which sought to modestly increase the student population without building a new, on-campus dorm. Evans's plan was called "unrealistic, even outlandish" by The Hoya , Georgetown's student newspaper.[40] Evans has since worked to mend his relationship with Georgetown, as he was quoted saying “As mayor, I would assign a liaison to be in charge of communicating with universities and surrounding communities. I think it is critical for us to reach out to students because they are our most valuable resource.” Evans also noted that he “would push for-credit internship and summer jobs programs to get people more involved in the community.” Evans believes that “Students at Georgetown and other area universities demonstrate a real interest in social justice issues and helping out. I believe the city government can be a big resource to D.C. students who are looking for internships and need information on prospective employers citywide so that they can get work after graduation."[41]

Evans supports a plan that would support moving the FBI headquarters in exchange for the Washington Redskins return to Washington, DC.[42]

In 2013, Evans voted against a censure of Marion Barry after he was found guilty of accepting unauthorized gifts from a city contractor. Evans said that he believed that punishing Barry would also punish the residents of Ward 8, who Barry gives voice to on the Council, especially in matters regarding the workforce and community affairs (as chairman.) [43] The Washington Post said he was "tone-deaf to principles of good government" and voiced speculation that the vote was made in hopes of securing Barry's support for his mayoral campaign.[43]

Evans authored the Tax Parity Act of 1999, which included substantial reductions in income and property taxes for residents and businesses.[44][45]

Election history[edit]

1996 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, Primary Election[46]

Jack Evans (D) 78%
James McLeod (D) 21%
Write-in 1%

1996 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, General Election[47]

Jack Evans (D) 79%
Roger L. Moffatt (R) 21%
Write-in 1%

1998 Mayor of the District of Columbia, Democratic Primary Election[48]

Anthony Williams (D) 50%
Kevin P. Chavous (D) 35%
Jack Evans (D) 10%
Harold Brazil (D) 4%
Sylvia Robinson-Green (D) 0%
Jeff Gildenhorn (D) 0%
Osie Thorpe (D) 0%
Write-in 0%

2000 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, Primary Election[49]

Jack Evans (D) 66%
John Fanning (D) 18%
Pete Ross (D) 15%
Ray Avrutis (D) 1%
Write-in 1%

2000 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, General Election[50]

Jack Evans (D) 80%
Tom Briggs (STG) 20%
Write-in 1%

2004 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, Primary Election[51]

Jack Evans (D) 96%
Write-in 4%

2004 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, General Election[52]

Jack Evans (D) 82%
Jesse James Price, Sr. (R) 9%
Jay Houston Marx (STG) 8%
Write-in 0%

2008 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, Primary Election[53]

Jack Evans (D) 65%
Cary Silverman (D) 35%

2008 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, General Election[54]

Jack Evans (D) 82%
Christina Erland Culver (R) 17%
Write-in 1%

Committees[edit]

  • Committee on Finance and Revenue (Chair)
  • Committee on Economic Development
  • Committee on Public Safety and the Judiciary

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Council Period 17 Appointment of Chairperson Pro Tempore, Committee Chairpersons, and Committee and Membership Resolution of 2007". 
  2. ^ "District of DeBonis". The Washington Post. 
  3. ^ Trip Gabriel (April 2, 2014). "D.C. Mayor Is Defeated in Upset at Primary; Muriel Bowser Defeats Mayor Vincent Gray in Washington Primary". The New York Times. Retrieved April 2, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b Evans, Jack (November 18, 2011). "Unhappy Jack: Jack Evans says this is the worst D.C. Council in his 20 year tenure. But is he actually making it better?". Loose Lips (The Washington City Paper). 
  5. ^ a b "Elections 2004: Jack Evans". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2008-04-06. 
  6. ^ "Professionals: Jack Evans, Of Counsel". Patton Boggs LLP. Retrieved 2008-04-06. 
  7. ^ "Jack Evans Launches Campaign for D.C. Mayor". DCist.com. Retrieved 2013-10-07. 
  8. ^ DeBonis, Mike (2011-11-21). "Jack Evans’s mystery job revealed". washingtonpost.com. Retrieved 2013-10-07. 
  9. ^ a b Argetsinger, Amy; Roberts, Roxanne (2006-06-18). "Still Hoping to Fit Love Into a Very Busy Schedule". The Washington Post. p. D3. 
  10. ^ "Prostate Screenings Can Save Lives". WRC-TV (NBC 4). 2007-09-24. 
  11. ^ Jaffe, Harry. The Washingtonian. http://www.washingtonian.com/articles/people/and-daddy-makes-four-jack-evans-and-his-triplets/
  12. ^ "Jack & Michele Evans Modern Family". The Georgetowner. 2012-05-12. 
  13. ^ Koncius, Jura (2012-09-12). "Remaking D.C. council member Jack Evans’s Georgetown house". The Washington Post. 
  14. ^ Jaffe, Harry (2008-07-01). "And Daddy Makes Four: Jack Evans and His Triplets". The Washingtonian. 
  15. ^ a b c d Jack Evans | Council of the District of Columbia
  16. ^ a b c Craig, Tim; Stewart, Nikita (2011-08-21). "D.C. Council’s Jack Evans paid for sports tickets from constituent fund, records show". washingtonpost.com. Retrieved 2013-10-27. 
  17. ^ "Donations to Jack Evans constituent fund are under probe". washingtonpost.com. Retrieved 2013-10-27. 
  18. ^ Craig, Tim; Stewart, Nikita (2011-08-21). "D.C. Politics". The Washington Post. 
  19. ^ a b Sommer, Will. "Swagger Jack". Washington City Paper. 
  20. ^ "Jack Evans Launches Campaign for D.C. Mayor" http://dcist.com/2013/06/jack_evans_launches_2014_mayoral_ca.php
  21. ^ "The Needle: Back Up and Back Paid". washingtoncitypaper.com. Retrieved 2014-01-25. 
  22. ^ Jack Evans Hits the Club - Loose Lips
  23. ^ "Jack Evans Hits the Club". washingtoncitypaper.com. Retrieved 2014-01-25. 
  24. ^ "The Bishop is Back". washingtoncitypaper.com. Retrieved 2014-01-25. 
  25. ^ Cauvin, Henri E. (2006-02-24). "Deal Made In District Election Scandal". washingtoncitypaper.com. Retrieved 2014-01-26. 
  26. ^ "Power-line bill is being held up by Evans, mayoral officials say". washingtoncitypaper.com. Retrieved 2014-01-25. 
  27. ^ "Jack Evans Makes the Case for Vince Gray". washingtoncitypaper.com. Retrieved 2014-01-25. 
  28. ^ "Evans Campaign Touts Paid "Volunteer"". washingtoncitypaper.com. Retrieved 2014-01-25. 
  29. ^ "Seven Democrats file petitions for D.C. Mayoral primary" http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/blogs/looselips/2014/01/02/seven-democrats-file-petitions-for-d-c-mayoral-primary/
  30. ^ a b Evans Surpasses 1 Million Mark, Leads Pack In Mayoral Fundraising" http://dcist.com/2013/12/evans_surpasses_1_million_mark_lead.php
  31. ^ a b "D.C. Legislators Running For Mayor Exploit Loophole They Voted To Close". wamu.org. Retrieved 2014-01-28. 
  32. ^ "Who Had the Priciest Mayoral Campaign?". washingtoncitypaper.come. Retrieved 2014-05-28. 
  33. ^ Colbert, Chuck. Breaking news: DC couples obtain marriage licenses http://www.ebar.com/news/article.php?sec=news&article=4589
  34. ^ Sommer, Will. "Gray, Wells Top LGBT Activist Rankings". Washington City Paper. 
  35. ^ Seidel, Jeff. Q&A with D.C. Mayor Williams Mlb.com http://washington.nationals.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20041123&content_id=916128&vkey=news_was&fext=.jsp&c_id=was
  36. ^ Ladson, Bill. D.C.'s team to be the Nationals Mlb.com http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20041121&content_id=915341&vkey=news_mlb&fext=.jsp&c_id=null
  37. ^ Suderman, Alan. Evans’ Law Firm Had Ties to Convention Center Hotel Deal, After All http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/blogs/looselips/2011/10/31/evans-law-firm-had-ties-to-convention-center-hotel-deal-after-all/
  38. ^ "Councilman Evans Lashes Out at Veteran Reporter". Fightback.org. Retrieved 2013-12-20. 
  39. ^ "Bad to worse: Apology needed in ethics debate". Thegeorgetowndish.com. Retrieved 2013-12-20. 
  40. ^ "Hit the Road, Jack: Don't Come Back to Ward 2". The Hoya. November 11, 2011. Retrieved 17 June 2014. 
  41. ^ Evans Changes Tack on District Universities http://www.thehoya.com/news/evans-changes-tack-on-district-universities-1.3130137#.UulEv3ddU9y
  42. ^ DeBonis, Mike (December 6, 2012). "Jack Evans wants to swap the FBI for the Redskins". The Washington Post. Retrieved 18 December 2013. 
  43. ^ a b Board, Editorial (2013-09-18). "The D.C. Council’s moral moment rebuking Marion Barry". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2013-10-07. 
  44. ^ D.C. Council, Jack's Results. http://www.jackevans.org/results/
  45. ^ "Tax Parity Act of 1999". DCWatch. Retrieved 18 December 2013. 
  46. ^ Final and Complete Election Results. District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics. 1996-09-10.
  47. ^ Final and Complete Election Results. District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics. 1996-11-05.
  48. ^ Final and Complete Election Results. District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics. 1998-09-25.
  49. ^ Final and Complete Election Results. District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics. 2000-09-22.
  50. ^ Final and Complete Election Results. District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics. 2000-11-17.
  51. ^ Certified Results. District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics. 2004-09-14.
  52. ^ Certified Summary Results. District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics. 2004-11-18.
  53. ^ Certified Results. District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics. 2008-09-26.
  54. ^ Certified Results. District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics. 2008-11-24.

External links[edit]

Council of the District of Columbia
Preceded by
John Wilson
Member of the Council of the District of Columbia
for the Ward 2 district

1991–present
Incumbent