Donald Evans

Donald Evans
Donald Evans
34th United States Secretary of Commerce
In office
January 20, 2001 – February 7, 2005
President George W. Bush
Preceded by Norman Mineta
Succeeded by Carlos M. Gutierrez
Personal details
Born July 26, 1946 (1946-07-26) (age 65)
Houston, Texas
Political party Republican
Alma mater University of Texas at Austin (B.S./M.B.A.)

Donald Louis Evans (born July 26, 1946) was the 34th U.S. Secretary of Commerce. He was appointed by his longtime friend George W. Bush and sworn into office on January 20, 2001. On November 9, 2004, the White House announced that Evans intended to resign by the end of January 2005.

Donald Evans was chosen to be the Non-Executive Chairman of TXU Energy, following the completion of its acquisition by Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Texas Pacific Group.


Early life

Born in Houston, Texas, Evans attended the University of Texas at Austin, receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering in 1969 and an MBA from the McCombs School of Business in 1973. While at UT, he was a member of Texas Cowboys, Omicron Delta Kappa and the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity.

In 1975, Evans moved to Midland, Texas from Houston and began working on an oil rig for Tom Brown Inc., a large independent energy company now based in Denver. Ten years later he took the company over as CEO and continued running it until becoming Commerce Secretary.

Political career

In 1995, Bush, then the Governor of Texas, appointed Evans to the Board of Regents of the University of Texas System, serving as Chairman of the Board for the last four years. He was a board member of the Scleroderma Research Foundation for eight years and a driving force behind Native Vision, a program that provides services to some 10,000 Native American children. He has been involved with the United Way of America for many years, serving as President in 1989 and Campaign Chair in 1981. He has been named Jaycees Man of the Year.

Evans worked for Bush's successful gubernatorial campaigns in 1994 and 1998, and served as Chairman of the Bush/Cheney 2000 campaign. During Bush's 2004 State of the Union he was the designated survivor and spent the night in a secure undisclosed location. In the event of an attack on the Capitol, he would have become Acting President.

On October 29, 2001, Enron Chairman Ken Lay telephoned Evans, asking for help in persuading the credit rating agencies to refrain from a downgrade. Evans expressed sympathy but did nothing to intervene.

On November 9, 2004, Evans submitted his resignation from the post of Secretary of Commerce, although he stayed until his successor was sworn in on February 7, 2005.

The New York Times reported on May 26, 2006 that Evans had emerged as the front-runner to take over the US Treasury Department pending John W. Snow's then rumored resignation. However, on May 30, Henry Paulson was nominated to replace Snow.

Evans also serves as CEO of the Financial Services Forum, a trade association representing the CEOs of financial services firms dedicated to using the Protect America Act to overtake legitimate economic development organizations, seeking to encourage an open and competitive global marketplace.

Personal life

He is married to Susan Marinis Evans. They have two daughters, a son,and three grandchildren.

Fictional portrayal

Evans was portrayed by Noah Wyle in W., Oliver Stone's 2008 biopic of George W. Bush.


Political offices
Preceded by
Norman Mineta
United States Secretary of Commerce
Served under: George W. Bush

January 20, 2001 - February 7, 2005
Succeeded by
Carlos M. Gutierrez

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