Jack Evans (Washington, D.C. politician)

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Jack Evans
Member of the Council of the District of Columbia from Ward 2
Assumed office
May 13, 1991
Preceded byJohn A. Wilson
Commissioner of the District of Columbia from district 2B07
In office
January 2, 1989 – January 2, 1991
Preceded byRenee Schnager
Succeeded byDennis Holmes
Personal details
Born (1953-10-31) October 31, 1953 (age 65)
Nanticoke, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
ResidenceWashington, D.C.
EducationUniversity of Pennsylvania (B.A.)
University of Pittsburgh (JD)

John K. Evans III (born October 31, 1953) is an American politician and lawyer.[1][2][3] A member of the Democratic Party, he has represented Ward 2 of Washington, D.C. since 1991, making him the D.C. Council's longest-serving lawmaker. Evans serves as the Chairman of the Board of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority.[4] He ran for mayor in 1998 and 2014, but lost in the Democratic primary both times.[5][6]

Early life and education[edit]

Evans was born in Nanticoke, Pennsylvania,[7] the son of a florist and a school teacher. He received an economics degree[8] 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[8] in 1978. He began practicing law in Washington, D.C. at the Securities and Exchange Commission in the Division of Enforcement.[9]

Political career[edit]

Evans was elected to the D.C. Council in 1991 in a special election to replace John A. Wilson, who had run for council chairman and won. He was sworn in on May 13, 1991.[10] He had previously served as a member of Advisory Neighborhood Commission 2B in Dupont Circle. Evans was elected to serve as chairman of the ANC from 1989 to 1990.[11] He is currently the Councilmember for Ward 2, which includes Chinatown, Logan Circle, Dupont Circle, Sheridan-Kalorama, Foggy Bottom, the West End, Georgetown, Burleith, Hillandale, and much of Downtown Washington (including the White House, the National Mall, and the U.S. Capitol Building).[11]

On the D.C. Council, Evans serves as chairman 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 20 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.[11]

Evans was a delegate at the 1992, 1996, 2000, 2004, 2008, 2012, and 2016 Democratic National Conventions, as well as D.C. Co-Chair of the 2004 Howard Dean presidential campaign, the 1992 and 1996 Bill Clinton presidential campaigns, the 2012 Barack Obama presidential campaign and the 2008 and 2016 Hillary Clinton presidential campaigns.[11] He was a Presidential Elector for the District of Columbia in 1992, 2004, and 2016.[11] He also served as D.C. Democratic Party treasurer from 1988 to 1991, Board Chairman for the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments in 1995, and was elected Democratic National Committeeman for the District on the Democratic National Committee in 2018.[11]

Evans first ran for mayor in 1998, coming in third behind Anthony A. Williams and fellow councilmember Kevin P. Chavous. Evans launched his second campaign for mayor on June 8, 2013.[12] By December 10, his campaign had raised over $1,000,000, making him the top fundraising candidate and the first to break the million-dollar mark.[13] On January 27, the campaign had turned in more than 10,000 petition signatures, the largest collection of signatures by a mayoral candidate in the 2014 race.[14] Evans finished in fourth place with 4,039 votes.[15]

During his time on the D.C. Council, Evans' outside employment includes work as an insurance executive for Central Benefits Mutual Insurance Co., as an of counsel attorney at the Squire Patton Boggs law firm from 2001 until 2015, and earlier as a partner with the firm BakerHostetler.[16] In October 2015, Evans became Counsel to the law firm of Manatt, Phelps & Phillips.[1][17] He resigned from the firm in November 2017.[18]

Evans has been criticized for using his constituent service funds to purchase tickets to sporting events.[19] Such funds are also used to help needy constituents with expected and unexpected expenses, such as funerals.[19] The Washington Post calculated that Evans had spent $135,897 on sporting events and directed $101,564 toward charitable organizations over the previous decade.[19] Evans explained that, as a major advocate of local sports, he used funds for the benefit of Little League Baseball teams and other constituents that cannot afford to attend sports events.[19] In 2016, the council approved a $20,000 increase to the funding limits of constituent services funds.[20]

In 2018, the D.C. Board of Ethics and Government Accountability opened an investigation into Evans's dealings with digital sign company Digi Media, to determine whether Evans had violated the Council's code of conduct by lobbying on the company's behalf. Evans denies violating ethics rules.[21][22] In December 2018, it was reported that the ethics board had suspended the inquiry because of an ongoing law enforcement investigation.[23][24]

Political positions[edit]

Evans supports gay rights. According to 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.[25] 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.[26]

Evans supported the construction of the Verizon Center, which opened in 1997 in his ward and became home to the Washington Wizards, Washington Mystics, and Washington Capitals as they moved from suburban Maryland to Downtown Washington. He played a key role in the negotiations that brought the Montreal Expos franchise to Washington, D.C., in 2005, and in the Council's 2004 decision to finance a stadium for the Washington Nationals.[27] In 2016, Evans stated that he opposed proposed legislation that would impose a cap on public funding for a new Wizards practice facility.[28]

In 2001, Evans introduced successful legislation to overturn a 1994 referendum that had limited members of the D.C. Council to two terms.[29] Evans argued that by denying voters their choice of candidates, term limits were undemocratic.[30]

Evans has several times introduced legislation to ban Council involvement in the contract procurement process, a practice which Evans has described as "a recipe for mischief,"[31] and which the Washington Post said in 2015, "practically invites losing bidders and their lobbyists to attempt an end run."[32]

In July 2012, Evans sponsored legislation to delay the direct election of D.C.'s attorney general.[12][33][34] Voters had previously approved a charter amendment making the post an elected, rather than appointed, position. Evans expressed concern that the city was not ready for the scheduled 2014 vote, noting among other things that no candidates had emerged for the position.[33] In June 2014, a federal appeals court invalidated the legislation and ordered that the vote take place as scheduled.[35]

In 2013, Evans co-sponsored introduced emergency measures to keep application-based services like Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar street legal.[36]

Evans favors the return of the Washington Redskins to the District of Columbia, and has said that neither the personality of the team's owner, Daniel Snyder, nor the controversy over the team's name should be relevant to that effort. As he explained, "whatever it's called, whoever owns it is not relevant, because that will change over time."[37]

In 2016, the D.C. Council considered legislation that would provide paid family and medical leave to employees in the District of Columbia and fund the benefits by new taxes on all District businesses.[38] Evans opposed the new tax, calling the proposed legislation an "absurdity" because most of the benefits would be received by residents of neighboring Maryland and Virginia, not those of the District, whose businesses would be taxed.[38] As an alternative, Evans co-introduced legislation which would have afforded the same paid leave, but in lieu of a tax, would have required private employers to pay employees for the time off. Although supported by the Mayor and major business groups, the alternative failed, and the original proposal passed the Council by a vote of 9-4.[39][40]

Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority[edit]

Evans has twice served as the primary director from the District of the Columbia on the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, first from 1993 to 1999 and again from 2015 through the present. He has served as chairman of the board three times (1994, 1997, and 2016).[41] During his current tenure, Evans has advocated reform of the agency and additional funding from the federal government.[42] In November 2016, Evans urged that Metro's challenges should be addressed by a federal takeover, in an arrangement akin to the control board that rescued the District from financial crisis in the 1990s. Evans stated that Metro's current 16-member board was cumbersome and unworkable. Evans also cautioned that establishment of a control board would face major legal and political challenges, and acknowledged that the proposal was unlikely to win much backing.[43]


Evans currently serves on the following committees:[44]

  • Committee on Finance and Revenue (Chair)
  • Committee on Transportation and the Environment
  • Committee on Business and Economic Development
  • Committee on Government Operations

Personal life[edit]

Evans married Noel Soderberg in 1994.[45] The couple had three children together, triplets.[46] Soderberg died in September 2003 after a long battle with breast cancer.[47][48] His second marriage, to Michele Seiver, ended in divorce.[49][50][51][52] Evans is a member of the Christ Church in Georgetown and the Foundry Methodist Church in Dupont Circle, for which he served as Chair of the annual AIDS fundraiser from 2001–03.[11][53][11][54]

Election history[edit]

1991 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, Special Election[55]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 31
Democratic Jim Zais 27
Democratic Bill Cochran 11
Democratic Clarene Martin 11
  Other 18
  Write-in 2
1992 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, Democratic Primary Election[56]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 95
  Write-in 5
1992 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, General Election[57]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 79
Republican Herbert Coles 13
Republican Nathaniel Adams 7
  Write-in 1
1996 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, Democratic Primary Election[58]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 78
Democratic James McLeod 21
  Write-in 1
1996 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, General Election[59]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 79
Republican Roger L. Moffatt 21
  Write-in 1
1998 Mayor of the District of Columbia, Democratic Primary Election[60]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Anthony Williams 50
Democratic Kevin P. Chavous 35
Democratic Jack Evans 10
Democratic Harold Brazil 4
Democratic Sylvia Robinson-Green 0
Democratic Jeff Gildenhorn 0
Democratic Osie Thorpe 0
  Write-in 0
2000 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, Democratic Primary Election[61]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 66
Democratic John Fanning 18
Democratic Pete Ross 15
Democratic Ray Avrutis 1
  Write-in 1
2000 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, General Election[62]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 79
D.C. Statehood Green Tom Briggs 21
  Write-in 1
2004 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, Democratic Primary Election[63]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 96
  Write-in 4
2004 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, General Election[64]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 82
Republican Jesse James Price, Sr. 9
D.C. Statehood Green Jay Houston Marx 8
  Write-in 0
2008 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, Democratic Primary Election[65]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 65
Democratic Cary Silverman 35
  Write-in 0
2008 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, General Election[66]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 82
Republican Christina Erland Culver 17
  Write-in 1
2012 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, Democratic Primary Election[67]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 2,947 92.27
  Write-in 247 7.73
2012 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, General Election[68]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 23,414 96.86
  Write-in 760 3.14
2014 Mayor of the District of Columbia, Democratic Primary Election[69]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Muriel Bowser 42,045 43.38
Democratic Vincent Gray 31,613 32.62
Democratic Tommy Wells 12,393 12.79
Democratic Jack Evans 4,877 5.03
Democratic Andy Shallal 3,196 3.30
Democratic Vincent Orange 1,946 2.01
  Write-in 235 0.24
2016 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, Democratic Primary Election[70]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 7,626 95.37
  Write-in 370 4.63
2016 Council of the District of Columbia, Ward 2, General Election[71]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Jack Evans 27,534 96.58
  Write-in 975 3.42


  1. ^ a b Will Sommer (March 15, 2016). "Jack Evans Gets a New Job—And a Big New Potential Conflict of Interest". The Washington City Paper. Retrieved March 15, 2016.
  2. ^ "Council Period 17 Appointment of Chairperson Pro Tempore, Committee Chairpersons, and Committee and Membership Resolution of 2007" (PDF).
  3. ^ https://www.legaldirectories.com/Evans-John-K-III-289034-Atty.aspx
  4. ^ Duggan, Paul (2016-01-28). "Metro board has new leader: D.C. Council member Jack Evans". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2016-01-29.
  5. ^ 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.
  6. ^ "District of DeBonis". The Washington Post.
  7. ^ Alan Suderman (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?". Washington City Paper.
  8. ^ a b "Elections 2004: Jack Evans". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2008-04-06.
  9. ^ Sommer, Will (June 1, 2015). "Jack Evans, Full-Time Councilmember". The Washington City Paper. Retrieved June 1, 2015.
  10. ^ "Evans Takes D.C. Oath". The Washington Post. May 14, 1991. p. B2.
  11. ^ a b c d e f g h "Jack Evans". Council of the District of Columbia. Retrieved August 15, 2014.
  12. ^ a b Sommer, Will. "Swagger Jack". Washington City Paper.
  13. ^ "Evans Surpasses 1 Million Mark, Leads Pack In Mayoral Fundraising", DCist.
  14. ^ "Seven Democrats file petitions for D.C. Mayoral primary", Washington City Paper
  15. ^ "Who Had the Priciest Mayoral Campaign?". Washington City Paper. Retrieved May 28, 2014.
  16. ^ DeBonis, Mike (November 21, 2011). "Jack Evans's mystery job revealed". Washington Post. Retrieved October 7, 2013.
  17. ^ Sommer, Will (May 19, 2016). "Jack Evans Remains King of the Shady Arrangement". Washington City Paper. Retrieved May 19, 2016.
  18. ^ Lovelace, Ryan (8 January 2018). "DC Lawmaker Leaves Manatt Amid Lobbying Scrutiny". National Law Journal. Washington DC. Retrieved 8 January 2018.
  19. ^ a b c d Craig, Tim; Stewart, Nikita (August 21, 2011). "D.C. Council's Jack Evans paid for sports tickets from constituent fund, records show". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 27, 2013.
  20. ^ Sherwood, Tom (May 10, 2018). "Do Constituent Service Funds Always Serve Constituents?". Washington City Paper. Retrieved May 10, 2018.
  21. ^ Fenit Nirappil (May 2, 2018). "Ethics officials examine D.C. lawmaker's business ties to digital sign company". Washington Post. Washington DC. Retrieved May 2, 2018.
  22. ^ ANDREW GIAMBRONE (June 15, 2018). "D.C. Ethics Official Confirms Investigation Into Councilmember's Conduct". Washington City Paper. Washington DC. Retrieved June 15, 2018.
  23. ^ Thompson, Steve (December 20, 2018). "D.C. Council member Jack Evans received stock just before pushing legislation that would benefit company". The Washington Post. Retrieved 16 January 2019.
  24. ^ "DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA BOARD OF ETHICS AND GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTABILITY MINUTES OF MEETING January 10, 2019" (PDF). BEGA DC. p. 9. Retrieved 16 January 2019. In response to a question from Mr. Sindram as to why the investigation with respect to Councilmember Evans had been stayed, the Director stated that the investigation had been stayed because of an ongoing law enforcement investigation.
  25. ^ Meet the Allies, Washington Blade, June 7, 2012.
  26. ^ Colbert, Chuck. "Breaking news: DC couples obtain marriage licenses"
  27. ^ Seidel, Jeff. "Q&A with D.C. Mayor Williams", Mlb.com.
    Ladson, Bill. D.C.'s team to be the Nationals", Mlb.com.
  28. ^ O'Connell, Jonathan (March 1, 2016). "D.C. Council member proposes spending cap for Wizards facility". Washington Post.
  29. ^ Chan, Sewell (9 January 2001). "D.C. Council Considers Repeal of Term Limits". Washington Post. Retrieved 1 October 2016.
  30. ^ Chan, Sewell (1 October 2008). "When a City Council Repealed Term Limits". New York Times. Retrieved 1 October 2016.
  31. ^ "Jack Evans to propose curtailing D.C. Council power over city contracts". Washington Examiner. Retrieved 2015-09-17.
  32. ^ Board, Editorial (2015-05-04). "Get the D.C. Council out of the procurement process". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2015-09-17.
  33. ^ a b "D.C. Council delays first election of attorney general". The Washington Post. Retrieved April 6, 2014.
  34. ^ "D.C. Council Postpones Attorney General Election to 2018". The Legal Times. Retrieved August 14, 2014.
  35. ^ "Appeals court restores D.C. attorney general election". The Washington Post. Retrieved August 14, 2014.
  36. ^ "Cheh, Evans pass legislation to protect Uber from city regulations". 17 September 2013.
  37. ^ "D.C. Council Member Jack Evans says Redskins name shouldn't be roadblock to a Washington stadium". Retrieved September 14, 2015.
  38. ^ a b Peter Jamison (December 6, 2016). "D.C.'s expansive family and medical leave policy advances". Retrieved December 6, 2016.
  39. ^ Peter Jamison (December 19, 2016). "Two D.C. Council members propose radical revisions to paid family leave bill". Retrieved December 19, 2016.
  40. ^ Peter Jamison (December 20, 2016). "D.C. Council votes for expansive paid family and medical leave for private-sector workers". Retrieved December 20, 2016.
  41. ^ DiCaro, Martin (28 January 2016). "Jack Evans Elected Chair Of Metro Board In Unanimous Vote". Washington, DC: WAMU. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  42. ^ Powers, Martine (6 August 2016). "For lawmakers, Metro's recent woes mean tougher prospects on the Hill". Washington Post. Washington, DC. Retrieved 6 August 2016.
  43. ^ McCartney, Robert (2 November 2016). "Metro Board Chairman Jack Evans urges federal takeover of transit system". Washington Post. Washington, DC. Retrieved 2 November 2016.
  44. ^ "Councilmember Jack Evans". dccouncil.us.
  45. ^ "Noel Soderberg Evans". 13 September 2003 – via www.washingtonpost.com.
  46. ^ Jaffe, Harry (July 1, 2008). "And Daddy Makes Four: Jack Evans and His Triplets". The Washingtonian.
  47. ^ Argetsinger, Amy; Roberts, Roxanne (June 18, 2006). "Still Hoping to Fit Love Into a Very Busy Schedule". The Washington Post. p. D3.
  48. ^ "Prostate Screenings Can Save Lives". WRC-TV (NBC 4). September 24, 2007.
  49. ^ "Jack & Michele Evans Modern Family - The Georgetowner". 29 June 2012.
  50. ^ "D.C. Councilman Jack Evans and his wife have split". February 19, 2015 – via www.washingtonpost.com.
  51. ^ Jura Koncius (September 21, 2017). "'My turn': An empty nester creates a dream house as a gift to herself" – via www.washingtonpost.com.
  52. ^ Entertain_DC (22 January 2016). "Q&A Café with Carol Joynt - Guest: Jack Evans" – via YouTube.
  53. ^ King, Colbert (February 18, 2014). "A soul-stirring performance by D.C. mayoral candidates". The Washington Post.
  54. ^ Stroup, Dave (19 September 2010). "Sunday Questions With Jack Evans". DCist. Washington, DC. Archived from the original on 14 January 2016. Retrieved 19 July 2016.
  55. ^ Sanchez, Rene (May 1, 1991). "EVANS TAKES NARROW WIN IN WARD 2". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved April 4, 2016.
  56. ^ "1992 Council Primary Election Results" (PDF).
  57. ^ "1992 Council General Election Results" (PDF).
  58. ^ https://dcboe.org/Elections/Election-Results-Archives/Election-Year-1996/November-5-General-Election
  59. ^ https://dcboe.org/Elections/Election-Results-Archives/Election-Year-1996/September-10-Primary-Election
  60. ^ https://dcboe.org/Elections/Election-Results-Archives/Election-Year-1998/September-15-Primary-Election
  61. ^ https://dcboe.org/Elections/Election-Results-Archives/Election-Year-2000/September-12-Primary-Election
  62. ^ https://dcboe.org/Elections/Election-Results-Archives/Election-Year-2000/November-7-General-Election
  63. ^ https://dcboe.org/Elections/Election-Results-Archives/Election-Year-2004/September-14-Congressional-and-City-Council-Primar
  64. ^ https://dcboe.org/dcboe/media/PDFFiles/Summary_2.pdf
  65. ^ Certified Results. District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics. September 26, 2008.
  66. ^ Certified Results. District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics. November 24, 2008.
  67. ^ Certified Results. District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics. November 23, 2014.
  68. ^ Certified Results. District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics. September 23, 2014.
  69. ^ Final and Complete Election Results. District of Columbia Board of Elections and Ethics. April 1, 2014.
  70. ^ https://dcboee.org/election_info/election_results/downloads/June_14_2016_Primary_Election_Certified_Results.xml
  71. ^ https://dcboee.org/election_info/election_results/downloads/November_8_2016_General_Election_Certified_Results.xml

External links[edit]

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