Powers became president of the University of Texas at Austin in February 2006, previously serving as dean of the university's law school. He has also held teaching appointments at the law schools of the University of Washington, the University of Michigan and Southern Methodist University. He graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School in 1973.
Feinberg co-founded the Knowledge Is Power Program, or KIPP, a national network of public charter schools, in 1984. A former Teach for America corps member in Houston, where he taught fifth-grade bilingual education, he currently serves as superintendent of the city's 20 KIPP schools.
Farr is the chief knowledge officer for Teach for America, where he has been a staff member since 2001. A University of Texas graduate, Farr authored Teaching as Leadership: The Highly Effective Teacher's Guide to Closing the Achievement Gap. As a Teach for America corps member in 1993, he taught high school English and English as a Second Language for two years in the Rio Grande Valley.
Goka is the current and first principal of the Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders, which opened in Austin in 2007. She previously directed the Austin Independent School District's Kealing Middle School Magnet Program for Advanced Academics. She began her career in education at Cullen Junior High, an urban school in the Houston Independent School District.
Eissler, a Republican from The Woodlands, has represented District 15 in the Texas House since 2003. He has served as chairman of the House Committee on Public Education since 2007. He was previously president of the Conroe Independent School District Board of Trustees.
Shapiro, a Plano Republican, has represented District 8 in the Texas Senate since 1993. She chairs both the Senate Committee on Education and Subcommittee on Public Education Funding and is a member of the Subcommittee on Higher Education Funding.
Zaffirini, a Laredo Democrat, has represented District 21 in the Texas Senate since 1987. She chairs the Senate Committee on Higher Education; co-chairs the Joint Oversight Committee of Higher Education Governance, Excellence, and Transparency; and sits on the subcommittees on Fiscal Matters and Higher Education Funding.
Branch, a Dallas Republican, has represented District 108 in the Texas House since 2003. He is chairman of the House Committee on Higher Education and co-chairman of the Joint Oversight Committee of Higher Education Governance, Excellence, and Transparency.
Patrick, a Houston Republican, has represented District 7 in the Texas Senate since 2007. He is currently the vice chairman of the Senate Education Committee and a member of subcommittees on Fiscal Matters, Public Education Funding and Higher Education Funding. He hosts a daily talk show on AM700 in Houston.
Heflin serves as director of the Center for Fiscal Policy at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, an Austin-based conservative research institute. A former state representative for Harris County's District 149, Heflin sat on the House Ways and Means Committee and chaired the Appropriations Committee.
McCown is the executive director of the Center for Public Policy Priorities, an Austin-based policy institute that focuses on the economic and social conditions of low- and moderate-income Texans. Before joining the center in 2002, he served as a district state judge, where he presided over all of Texas's public school finance cases from 1990 to 2002.
Hochberg, a Houston Democrat, has represented District 137 in the Texas House since 2003. He is the vice chairman of the House Public Education Committee and chairs the Education Subcommittee of the Appropriations Committee. He also serves on the Joint Select Committee on Voter Identification and Voter Fraud.
Spellings served as President George W. Bush's secretary of education from 2005 to 2009, leading the implementation of the administration's education reform initiatives. She is currently the president and chief executive officer of Margaret Spellings and Company, a Washington-based public policy and strategic consulting firm.
McLeroy represented District 9 on the Texas State Board of Education from 1998 to 2010, acting as board chairman from 2007 to 2009. During his time on the board, he also served as vice chairman and sat on the Planning Committee and Permanent School Fund Committee.
Ratliff was elected to represent District 9 on the Texas State Board of Education in 2010. He currently serves on the board's Committee on School Finance/Permanent School Fund. He co-founded Ratliff Company, an Austin-based governmental consulting and lobbying firm. Previously, he served as director of external affairs for AT&T Wireless in Texas and eight other states.
Miller is president of the Texas Freedom Network, which works to limit the influence of religious groups on public institutions. She previously served as communications director for the Texas Council on Family Violence and as public affairs director for Planned Parenthood Federation of Austin.
Saenz is an attorney and director of legislative affairs at the Liberty Institute, a Plano-based conservative advocacy group. A graduate of the University of Houston Law Center, he frequently presents testimony in defense of conservative values before the Texas Legislature and the State Board of Education.
Gov. Rick Perry appointed Scott Texas commissioner of education in October 2007. As commissioner, he heads the Texas Education Agency, which oversees the state’s 1,200 public school districts and charter schools. Before his appointment, he served as acting commissioner twice and was a senior policy adviser to Perry during the creation of the Texas High School Initiative in 2003.
Natalicio has served as president of the University of Texas at El Paso since 1988. She previously worked at the university as vice president for academic affairs, dean of liberal arts, chairwoman of the modern languages department and a professor of linguistics. A graduate of St. Louis University, she earned a master's degree in Portuguese and a doctorate in linguistics from the University of Texas at Austin.
Loftin was named president of Texas A&M University in February 2010 after serving as interim president since June 2009. A 1970 Texas A&M graduate, he was previously the vice president and chief executive officer of the university's branch campus at Galveston, where he was also a professor of maritime systems engineering. He holds a master's degree and a doctorate from Rice University, both in physics.
Rhodes has served as president of El Paso Community College since 2001, before which he held positions at Salt Lake City Community College and New Mexico State University. He earned his doctorate in the Community College Leadership Program at the University of Texas. In September he will assume the presidency of Austin Community College.
Khator has served as both the chancellor of the University of Houston System and president of the University of Houston since 2008. A native of Uttar Pradesh, India, she was named to the Indian Prime Minister's Global Advisory Council in 2009. She is the UH System’s first woman chancellor and is the first Indian immigrant to head a comprehensive research university in the United States.
Carstarphen has served as superintendent of the Austin Independent School District since 2009. She is an adjunct faculty member of the Department of Educational Administration at the University of Texas. She also serves in advisory and committee roles for the Urban Superintendents Program at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Culwell has served as superintendent of the Garland Independent School District since 1999. He is also a former superintendent of the Lubbock Independent School District and received his doctoral degree from Texas A&M University. He began his career as an English teacher in the GISD.
Folks has served as superintendent of Northside Independent School District in San Antonio since 2002. He is a former Oklahoma State superintendent of public instruction and also served as superintendent of Spring ISD in Houston. A native of Oklahoma, he began his teaching career in Port Arthur, Texas.