Roy Romer’s interest in and involvement with America’s schools goes back a long way. Those decades of involvement convinced him that in an age of globalization, outsourcing of jobs, and cutting-edge technology, education is absolutely key for the future success of our society.
Governor Romer spent six years as the superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) – the second largest school district in the country. During his time in L.A., he focused on three areas: creating a rigorous curriculum, high expectations for students and teachers, and professional development. In his tenure, four bond issues were passed, which raised $19.3 billion to build new schools for a district that had not built a full new high school in 30 years. These schools will help relieve overcrowding and cross-town busing, and make it easier for some L.A. students to learn.
Roy Romer chaired the Education Commission of the States in 1994 and 1995, and was the first chairman of the National Education Goals Panel. That group developed the first national education report card. He served as co-vice chairman of Achieve, an effort by the nation's governors and major corporate leaders to reform education by the use of standards and assessments.
Finally, in collaboration with Mike Leavitt – who was the governor of Utah at the time – he spearheaded the development of Western Governors University, an innovative, "virtual university," now available online to people throughout the western United States.
Most of his public career has involved Colorado politics and public office. He served three terms as governor from 1987 to 1999, was State Treasurer from 1977-1987, and served in the Colorado Senate from 1962-1966 and the Colorado House from 1958-1962.