Len Munsil

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Len Munsil
Len Munsil.jpg
Republican nominee for Governor of Arizona
Preceded by Matt Salmon
Succeeded by Jan Brewer
Personal details
Born (1963-11-29) November 29, 1963 (age 53)
Phoenix, Arizona, U.S.
Political party Republican
Alma mater Arizona State University

Len Munsil is the President of Arizona Christian University. He was the Arizona Republican Party nominee for Governor of Arizona in the 2006 gubernatorial election, coming from behind to upset Don Goldwater in the Republican primary in his first run for any elective office. He lost to incumbent Janet Napolitano in the general election on November 7, 2006.

Munsil was the founding President for the Center for Arizona Policy, serving from 1996 to 2005. On November 17, 2011 he was announced as the permanent president of Arizona Christian University[1]

Personal background[edit]

In 2010, Munsil was named as the 6th President in the 50-year history of Southwestern College in Phoenix, Arizona. Munsil had been a member of the Board of Trustees for six years and an adjunct professor, teaching ethics, political science and pre-law courses at the College since 1994.

In his first year as President, Munsil implemented a name change to Arizona Christian University, invited President George W. Bush to speak at the school's 50th anniversary, drawing 1,260 supporters and raising more than $1.5 million, and presided over the school's largest enrollment and largest freshman class in history.

Munsil is also known as the founder of the Center for Arizona Policy, a public policy organization emphasizing socially conservative issues. Munsil personally drafted and lobbied seven of the more than 60 laws promoted by CAP since its founding in 1996.

Munsil attended Arizona State University and was the editor of the university's newspaper, The State Press. Under Munsil the editorial direction of the paper became conservative—particularly toward faculty members viewed by Munsil and his student journalist colleagues as too leftist.[2] Munsil was selected Outstanding Journalism Graduate of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism/Telecommunications.

Munsil has been a licensed attorney since 1988. He is admitted to practice in Arizona and federal courts, including eight U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal and the United States Supreme Court. He has authored numerous amicus curiae briefs for the U.S. Supreme Court. Munsil served in a judicial clerkship for Judge Daniel A. Manion of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit and was appointed by former Arizona Governor Fife Symington to the Arizona Juvenile Justice Advisory Council. He is author or co-author of two legal manuals.

Len and his wife Tracy have eight children and reside in Scottsdale. Dr. Tracy Munsil earned her master's degree and her Ph.D. in Political Science from Arizona State University, where she taught full-time in the School of Politics and Global Studies. Dr. Munsil is now an Associate Professor of Political Science and Chair of the General Education Department at Arizona Christian University, and also chaired the Liberal Arts task force. Like her husband, she is a former Outstanding Journalism Graduate at ASU, and Editor of the State Press. She home educated for 14 years.

Their oldest son Will played baseball and earned his bachelor's degree from Colorado Christian University, and his Juris Doctor from ASU. He taught history and was head high school football and baseball coach for Scottsdale Preparatory Academy High School for four years, and now is an adjunct professor and assistant football coach at ACU. Their oldest daughter Leigh followed her parents as Editor of ASU’s State Press, was a reporter for the Dallas Morning News, and now writes for Politico in Washington D.C. Their daughter Anne played basketball and was the Outstanding Scholar Athlete and Outstanding Graduate in Biblical Studies at Arizona Christian, and now attends the O’Connor College of Law at ASU. Their son Michael studied History and played football at Tabor College in Hillsboro, Kansas, and transferred to play for ACU’s first football team in 2014. Their daughter Laura graduated with honors from Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT with a Film Studies and History double major and now works in New York City as a development assistant for Original Media. Their daughter Ellen is a cadet and member of the competitive speech and debate team at the United States Air Force Academy, Class of 2016. Their daughter Kaye graduated with honors from Missouri Baptist University in 2016 and now lives in Champaign, IL, with her husband. Their son Matt graduated with honors from Scottsdale Preparatory Academy High School in 2014, where he was a National Merit Finalist, and an all-state athlete in football, basketball and baseball. He will resume his academic and athletic career in fall 2015 after a “gap year” working in New York and Spain.

On his father's side Munsil is descended from five signers of The Mayflower Compact and about a dozen men who fought in the American Revolution.

2006 gubernatorial election[edit]

During the campaign, Munsil was endorsed by four Republican Congressmen from Arizona: Jeff Flake, Trent Franks, Rick Renzi, and John Shadegg.[3] He was also endorsed by Senator John McCain and more than 30 state legislators.[4]

Early polls suggested that Munsil had significant ground to make up in the primary, indicating in July that he had a mere 12% of Republican voters behind him.[5] Don Goldwater, nephew of the late U.S. Senator and U.S. presidential candidate Barry Goldwater, came in second in a four-way Republican Primary Election on Sept. 12th. Munsil received 51% of the vote, while Goldwater garnered 40%. Mike Harris earned 6% and Gary Tupper mustered 4%.

In the general election, just 8 weeks later, Munsil was defeated by incumbent Governor Janet Napolitano by a 63% to 35% margin.

History of opinion polls for election[edit]

Zogby/Wall Street Journal – September 19–25, 2006, likely voters, +/-4%[6]

Polls %
Janet Napolitano 50%
Len Munsil 41%
Barry Hess 4%

Cronkite-Eight – September 21–24, 2006, registered voters, +/-3%[7]

Polls %
Janet Napolitano 64%
Len Munsil 28%
Barry Hess 2%

Rasmussen Reports – September 18, 2006, likely voters[8]

Polls %
Janet Napolitano 56%
Len Munsil 38%

Survey USA – September 16–18, 2006, likely voters, +/-4.6% [9]

Polls %
Janet Napolitano 56%
Len Munsil 40%


  1. ^ "Trustees Appoint Len Munsil as Permanent President of Arizona Christian University", Arizona Christian University.
  2. ^ Amy Silverman, "The Righteous Stuff", Phoenix New Times, November 10, 1993.
  3. ^ www.lenmunsil.com
  4. ^ Mike Sunnucks, "McCain backs Munsil for governor", Phoenix Business Journal, September 6, 2006.
  5. ^ "Rocky Mountain Poll", Behavior research Center.
  6. ^ "Battleground States Poll", Wall Street Journal.
  7. ^ "Cronkite-Eight Poll", Horizon.
  8. ^ [1]
  9. ^ "Here Are The Results of SurveyUSA Election Poll #10280"

External links[edit]

Party political offices
Preceded by
Matt Salmon
Republican nominee for Governor of Arizona
Succeeded by
Jan Brewer