Williamson Evers

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Williamson M. "Bill" Evers is an American political activist and education researcher. In 1988, he became a resident scholar at Stanford University's Hoover Institution -- first as a national fellow, then a visiting scholar, and most recently a research fellow. He went on leave from Hoover to serve as Assistant Secretary for the Office of Planning, Evaluation and Policy Development in the United States Department of Education during 2007-2009.

Political activism[edit]

During the 1970s and '80s, Evers was involved in the libertarian movement in the United States and the Libertarian Party specifically. In 1980, he was the Libertarian Party candidate for Congress in the 12th Congressional District of California. For several years he edited the libertarian magazine Inquiry. "Evers was the first editor of Inquiry which was initially published by the Cato Institute. He was abruptly fired in a nasty internal power dispute with Cato president Ed Crane."[1] At the time, he was considered a radical (he was a prominent member of the party's Radical Caucus) and an ally of Murray Rothbard against Crane and his supporters.[2] In 1984, Evers was campaign director for Libertarian Party presidential candidate David Bergland.[1] In 1993, he helped defeat an effort to eliminate the LP membership Pledge and moderate the LP Platform. He was still a member of the Libertarian National Committee as of March 1996.[3]

In the late 1990s, Evers began to work in the Republican Party, serving on George W. Bush's transition team after the 2000 election and acting as a Bush adviser in the 2000 and 2004 campaigns and as a McCain adviser in 2008.[4] In California, Evers has also served on the Republican State Central Committee and acted as an adviser to several Republican gubernatorial campaigns.[citation needed]

Education activism[edit]

In 1995, while one of his children was a third-grader at Escondido Elementary School in the Palo Alto Unified School District in California, Evers became an outspoken participant in the Math Wars over the teaching of mathematics. He became a leading member of the steering committee of a group called HOLD (Honest Open Logical Debate) on Math Reform[5] and organized a publicity stunt in which a toilet was mounted on the back of a pick-up truck and driven to a protest outside the school district headquarters. There Evers ceremonially flushed the new curriculum.[6]

From 1996 to 1998, Evers was a commissioner on the California State Commission for the Establishment of Academic Content and Performance Standards. At the Hoover Institution, he joined its Koret Task Force on K-12 Education, which was formed in 1999.

In 2001, he was appointed by President George W. Bush to the White House Commission on Presidential Scholars. From July to December 2003, he served as a senior education adviser to the Coalition Provisional Authority during the U.S. occupation of Iraq.[7] In 2004 he was elected to the Santa Clara County Board of Education in California.

On February 8, 2007, Bush nominated Evers to be an assistant secretary of education. His confirmation by the Senate was announced on October 17, 2007.[8] The eight-month delay was largely attributed to enemies he made during the Math Wars.[9]

Evers has written several opinion columns for well-known publications such as the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, and Christian Science Monitor.

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