William Bennett is one of America's most important, influential and respected voices on cultural political, and education issues. A native of Brooklyn, New York, Bill Bennett studied philosophy at Williams College (B.A.) and the University of Texas (Ph.D.) and earned a law degree from Harvard. He is currently a distinguished fellow at the Heritage Foundation, co-director of Empower America, and Chairman and co-founder of K12, an Internet-based elementary and secondary school.
During the 1980s, Dr. Bennett emerged as one of the nation's most prominent political figures. He served as President Reagan's chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities (1981-1985) and Secretary of Education (1985-1988), and President Bush's "drug czar" (1989-1990). In his various roles, he was perceived -- even by his adversaries -- as a man of strong, reasoned convictions who spoke candidly, eloquently, and honestly about some of the most important issues of our time.
Bill Bennett has accomplished a rare feat: since leaving government, he has achieved an even greater impact on our national political debate. Dr. Bennett has written for America's leading newspapers and magazines. He has also written and edited 14 books, two of which -- The Book of Virtues and The Children's Book of Virtues -- rank among the most successful of the past decade. The Book of Virtues has been made into an animated series that airs on PBS in the United States and Great Britain and has been seen in over 65 countries. Dr. Bennett's most recent book is The Broken Hearth: Reversing the Moral Collapse of the American Family, which will be released in September 2001.
Although he is a well-known Republican, Dr. Bennett often has crossed party lines in order to pursue important common purposes. He has worked closely with Democratic leaders to fight the decline of popular culture and to end worldwide religious persecution, and he is the co-chairman of the Partnership for a Drug-Free America with former New York Governor Mario Cuomo.
Dr. Bennett also serves on the Education Advisory Committee of Walden Media, a new company that produces TV shows and movies that focus on historical events and classic books and promote learning.
Thanks to his writings and speeches, William J. Bennett has extraordinary influence on America's political and social landscape.
He, his wife Elayne, and their two sons, John and Joseph, live in Chevy Chase, Maryland.