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Wednesday, January 8
 

12:30pm

Opening Luncheon with Mike Ditka, legendary NFL coach and Football Hall of Famer
Opening Keynote with Mike Ditka, introduction by Texas State Representative Scott Turner.

Speakers
avatar for Mike Ditka

Mike Ditka

Legendary NFL coach and Pro Football Hall of Famer
avatar for Craig James

Craig James

Former NFL Football Pro
avatar for Representative Scott Turner

Representative Scott Turner

Texas House of Representatives & Former NFL Player
State Representative Scott Turner, a businessman, national motivational speaker and former NFL  | player, was elected to the Texas House of Representatives in November 2012. He represents  | House District 33 which encompasses all of Rockwall County and portions of Collin County.  |   | Rep. Turner’s time in office is focused on fighting for lower taxes on small businesses, recruiting  | and retaining jobs in Texas... Read More →


Wednesday January 8, 2014 12:30pm - 1:45pm
Ballroom

2:00pm

Consumer Protection or Burden? Regulation of the Marketplace

From homeowners and title insurance to electricity markets and consumer lending, consumers face significant regulatory barriers. Not always content to leave these transactions to the market, policymakers have adopted numerous regulations. This begs the question, are existing consumer protections in our laws helping consumers or stifling consumer choice? This panel will examine how much consumer protection is enough. 


Moderators
KH

Kathleen Hunker

Policy Analyst for the Center for Economic Freedom, Texas Public Policy Foundation
Kathleen Hunker is a policy analyst with the Center for Economic Freedom at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. She is also a managing editor of the Foundation’s research and publications. Prior to joining the Foundation, Hunker worked as a legal associate at the Cato Institute’s Center for Constitutional Studies, where she conducted rigorous research and writing on a wide-range of federal and state cases in order to advance the... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Representative Dan Flynn

Representative Dan Flynn

Texas House of Representatives
Dan Flynn is in his sixth term representing House District 2 in the Texas House of  | Representatives, where he has gained a reputation as a strong fighter for the values of  | limited government, fiscal responsibility, and family values. In 2013, Representative Flynn  | was named East Texas Legislator of the Year for his principled conservative leadership. | | Throughout his years of public service in the Texas House of... Read More →
avatar for Tom

Tom "Smitty" Smith

Texas Director, Public Citizen
Smitty has served as state director of Public Citizen since 1985 and serves on the boards of Clean Water Action,  | the Texas Wind Power Coalition, Texans for Public Justice, Campaigns for People, the Clean Energy Project of  | CEERT, a nature preserve, and a solar energy company. He has recently received the Thomas Paine award from  | Campaigns for People, 2001 Austin Chronicle's critics choice award for “Best People's... Read More →
avatar for Representative John Smithee

Representative John Smithee

Texas House of Representatives
Representative John Smithee was elected State Representative of the 86th District in the November 1984 election. His district is comprised of Dallam, Deaf Smith, Hartley, Oldham, Parmer and Randall Counties. He has served as Chairman of Insurance since 1993. In addition to the Insurance Committee, he currently serves on the State Affairs Committee and also serves as Co-Chair of the Joint Interim Committee on Seacoast Territory Insurance and as... Read More →
avatar for Senator Larry Taylor

Senator Larry Taylor

The Texas State Senate
Senator Larry Taylor represents Senate District 11, comprised of parts of Brazoria, Galveston  | and Harris Counties. A native Texan, Larry attended Baylor University where he received his  | BBA in 1982. He and his wife Kerri are the proud parents of three adult children. Larry owns  | Truman Taylor Insurance Agency in Friendswood, an independent agency started by his father  | more than 50 years ago.  | | Senator... Read More →


Wednesday January 8, 2014 2:00pm - 3:10pm
Capitol Ballroom AB

2:00pm

Government: How Much is Enough?

Government spending and debt are growing fast, and without meaningful tax and budget reforms Texas could well become a victim of its own success. Join us as our panel explores the most effective ways to reduce the footprint of government, protect Texas taxpayers, and ensure that Texas stays on the road to prosperity.


Moderators
avatar for The Honorable Talmadge Heflin

The Honorable Talmadge Heflin

Director of the Center for Fiscal Policy, Texas Public Policy Foundation
The Honorable Talmadge Heflin is the Director of the Foundation’s Center for Fiscal Policy. Prior to joining the Foundation, Heflin served the people of Harris County as a state representative for 11 terms. Well regarded as a legislative leader on budget and tax issues by Democratic and Republican speakers alike, he for several terms was the only House member to serve on both the Ways and Means and Appropriations committees.  In the... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Representative Phil King

Representative Phil King

Texas House of Representatives
As State Representative for the 61st District, Phil King represents the people of Parker  | and Wise counties in the Texas Legislature. He has earned a reputation as a principle-driven conservative who consistently provides key leadership in passing some of Texas’  | most sweeping public policy legislation.  |   | King currently serves on the Energy Resources and Pensions committees. He also serves  | on the board... Read More →
avatar for Representative Charles Perry

Representative Charles Perry

Texas House of Representatives
Elected to the Texas House of Representatives in 2010, Charles Perry proudly represents the  | fine, hard-working citizens of House District 83 -- which includes Borden, Gaines, Lubbock  | (part), Lynn, Mitchell, Scurry, and Terry counties.  |   | A native West Texan, Perry spent his childhood in Sweetwater, and graduated from Sweetwater  | High School in 1980. In 1984, he completed his Bachelor of Business Administration... Read More →
avatar for Oliver Porter

Oliver Porter

Principal, PPP Associates, LLC
Oliver Porter is a leading proponent of the use of private industry to provide services for local  | government services. In his role of steering the start-up of the city of Sandy Springs, Georgia, he  | served as Chairman of the Charter Commission, volunteer Interim City Manager and Chairman  | of the Governor’s Commission. In these capacities he created and implemented a successful  | public/private partnership... Read More →
avatar for Dr. Richard Vedder

Dr. Richard Vedder

Director, Center for College Affordability and Productivity
Richard Vedder is Distinguished Professor of Economics at Ohio University, Director of the Center for  | College Affordability and Productivity and an adjunct scholar at the American Enterprise Institute.  | Dr. Vedder has written widely on American economic history, authoring such books as Out of Work:  | Unemployment and Government in Twentieth-Century America and The American Economy in Historical  | Perspective. He... Read More →


Wednesday January 8, 2014 2:00pm - 3:10pm
Capitol View Terrace North

2:00pm

Administrative Bloat: Enemy of the $10,000 Degree

Forty years ago, faculty outnumbered administrators on college campuses. Today, this ratio has been reversed. The panel will consider a proposal to reduce administrative spending in order both to drive down skyrocketing tuitions and to reallocate a portion of the savings back to instructional spending. 


Moderators
avatar for Dr. Thomas Lindsay

Dr. Thomas Lindsay

Director of the Center for Higher Education, Texas Public Policy Foundation
Tom Lindsay, Ph.D., is director of the Foundation’s Center for Higher Education. He has more than two decades’ experience in education management and instruction, including service as a dean, provost, and college president. In 2006, Lindsay joined the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) staff as director of the agency’s signature initiative, We the People. He was named Deputy Chairman and COO of the NEH in... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Representative Jim Murphy

Representative Jim Murphy

Texas House of Representatives
Jim Murphy serves in the Texas House, representing District 133 in West Houston. Jim is in his  | third term. | | Representative Murphy serves on the Committees Small Business and Economic Development and  | Higher Education and is the Chairman of the subcommittee on Manufacturing. | | Jim’s legislative work has been recognized by the National Coalition for Capital, Texas Right to Life,  | and the Texas Association of... Read More →
avatar for Dr. Raymund Paredes

Dr. Raymund Paredes

Commissioner of Higher Education, Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board
Raymund A. Paredes is Commissioner of Higher Education at the Texas Higher Education  | Coordinating Board. | | Dr. Paredes spent most of his academic career at UCLA where for 30 years he taught as an  | English professor and ten years as vice chancellor for Academic Development. In addition, he  | served as special assistant to the president of the University of California System in outreach  | efforts to improve access to... Read More →
avatar for Ron Trowbridge

Ron Trowbridge

Trustee, Lone Star College System
Appointed by President Ronald Reagan, Ronald L. Trowbridge was director of Educational and Cultural  | Affairs at the United States Information Agency, directing the Fulbright Program. His position required  | U. S. Senate confirmation. Later he became chief of staff to U. S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Warren  | Burger, publishing a book on the Chief Justice. He holds a Ph. D. in English from the University of  | Michigan... Read More →


Wednesday January 8, 2014 2:00pm - 3:10pm
Capitol View Terrace South

3:25pm

Local Choice: A New Idea for Freedom in Texas Education

Texas continues to lag behind other states in the area of school choice, as the 83rd Texas Legislature demonstrated how difficult it is, for a variety of reasons, to bring parental choice to Texas. This panel will examine the potential of local school choice programs, established at a district or regional level, and how such programs might impact Texas students, as well as our education system as a whole.


Moderators
avatar for James Golsan

James Golsan

Policy analyst for the Center for Education Policy, Texas Public Policy Foundation
James Golsan is an education policy analyst at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. He joined the Foundation’s Center for Education Policy in October 2010 and contributes to the following issues: K-12 education growth; public education reform; and private school choice. Prior to joining the Foundation, Golsan completed his Master’s of Arts degree in English at Texas Tech University. His article, “The Detective as Superhero: A... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Tom Currah

Tom Currah

Senior Advisor and Data Analysis Director, Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts
Tom Currah, Senior Advisor and Data Analysis Director at the Texas Comptroller of  | Public Accounts, has been with the Comptroller’s office since 1999. He has overseen  | dozens of high profile research and data projects, including the Financial Allocation  | Study for Texas (FAST), an examination of academic performance and spending at Texas  | school districts and campuses. He also recently led the team for the Texas... Read More →
avatar for Monty Exter

Monty Exter

Lobbyist, The Association of Texas Professional Educators
Monty Exter lobbies both the state legislature and before multiple state agencies on behalf of the Association of Texas Professional Educators (ATPE), the largest educators’ association in Texas and the largest independent educators’ association in the nation. Monty joined ATPE after having served as an ALJ for the Texas Workforce Commission and having worked on the legislative staff of State Representative Mike Villarreal. He... Read More →
avatar for Dr. Matt Ladner

Dr. Matt Ladner

Senior Advisor for Policy and Research, Foundation for Excellence in Education
Dr. Matthew Ladner is the Senior Advisor of Policy and Research for the Foundation for Excellence in Education. He previously served as Vice President of Research and Goldwater Institute. Prior to joining Goldwater, Ladner was director of state projects at the Alliance for School Choice. Ladner has written numerous studies on school choice, charter schools and special education reform and coauthored Report Card on American Education: Ranking... Read More →
avatar for Representative Scott Turner

Representative Scott Turner

Texas House of Representatives & Former NFL Player
State Representative Scott Turner, a businessman, national motivational speaker and former NFL  | player, was elected to the Texas House of Representatives in November 2012. He represents  | House District 33 which encompasses all of Rockwall County and portions of Collin County.  |   | Rep. Turner’s time in office is focused on fighting for lower taxes on small businesses, recruiting  | and retaining jobs in Texas... Read More →


Wednesday January 8, 2014 3:25pm - 4:35pm
Capitol Ballroom AB

3:25pm

Getting Rid of Unnecessary Criminal Laws

The panel will discuss the negative impact that “overcriminalization” has on both liberty and economic growth. There are over 1,700 criminal laws in Texas, including 1,500 outside the penal code and even eleven felonies related to oysters! Overcriminalization has been a burden on individuals and businesses in Texas for years, and we need to move back towards a system that recognizes the difference between a crime and something that is better handled through civil or administrative remedies.


Moderators
avatar for Vikrant Reddy

Vikrant Reddy

Policy analyst for the Center for Effective Justice, Texas Public Policy Foundation
Vikrant P. Reddy is a policy analyst in the Center for Effective Justice at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, where he coordinates the Right On Crime campaign. He has authored several reports on criminal justice policy and is a frequent speaker and media commentator on the topic.  Reddy has worked as a research assistant at The Cato Institute, as a law clerk to the Honorable Gina M. Benavides of the Thirteenth Court of Appeals of Texas... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Shannon Edmonds

Shannon Edmonds

Director of Governmental Relations, TDCAA
Shannon Edmonds is the Director of Governmental Relations for the Texas District and  | County Attorneys Association (TDCAA), the largest statewide association of prosecutors in the  | nation. Mr. Edmonds serves as a liaison between prosecutors and the Texas Legislature on  | criminal justice, juvenile justice, and government representation issues. Upon the conclusion of  | each legislative session, he authors TDCAA’s... Read More →
avatar for Representative Bryan Hughes

Representative Bryan Hughes

Texas House of Representatives
Bryan Hughes represents District Five in the Texas House of Representatives. He is a member  | of the House Appropriations Committee, and the Subcommittee on Natural Resources, Business  | and Economic Development, and Regulatory Agencies. He also serves on the Committee on  | Criminal Jurisprudence. | | He is humbled to represent the people of Camp, Morris, Rains, Titus, Smith, and Wood  | Counties. | | Born and raised in... Read More →
avatar for Paul Larkin

Paul Larkin

Senior Legal Research Fellow, The Heritage Foundation
Paul Larkin is a Senior Legal Research Fellow at The Heritage Foundation. Paul  | has an undergraduate degree from Washington & Lee University, a law degree  | from Stanford Law School, and a masters in public policy degree from George  | Washington University. He has held numerous positions throughout the criminal  | justice system. For example, he has been a federal agent, a lawyer at the Justice  | Department... Read More →
avatar for Representative Jeff Leach

Representative Jeff Leach

Texas House of Representatives
State Representative Jeff Leach proudly serves the citizens of House District 67, consisting of portions of Plano, Allen, Richardson and Dallas in Collin County. A committed conservative, Representative Leach believes in limiting the size and scope of government, lowering taxes and wisely investing in the critical infrastructure necessary to ensure Texas remains prosperous and strong as the state continues to grow. | | Representative Leach... Read More →


Wednesday January 8, 2014 3:25pm - 4:35pm
Capitol View Terrace North

3:25pm

Energy and Texas: Mastering the Master Resource

The last few years have witnessed an oil and gas boom unprecedented in Texas history. This rapid increase in production has led to undeniable benefits, as well as some challenges. Come and learn about developments in the what remains a vital issue in Texas.

 


Moderators
avatar for Josiah Neeley

Josiah Neeley

Policy analyst for the Center for Energy & the Environment, Texas Public Policy Foundation
Josiah Neeley joined the Foundation in October of 2011 as a Policy Analyst for the Center for Tenth Amendment Studies and the Armstrong Center on Energy & the Environment. Prior to joining TPPF, Josiah worked as an Associate for the firm of Bopp, Coleson & Bostrom in Terre Haute, Indiana, specializing in Constitutional Litigation, and clerked for the Honorable Roger Vinson, a federal district court judge in Pensacola, Florida. He has a... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Representative Jim Keffer

Representative Jim Keffer

Chairman of House Energy Resources, Texas House of Representatives
State Representative Jim Keffer (R-Eastland) is a conservative family man, small business owner and lifelong Texas Republican Party leader. As president of EBAA Iron Sales, Inc., Jim is one of the largest employers in his community. He is a graduate of Texas Tech University, and prior to running for the Texas Legislature, Jim served as Republican County Chairman for Eastland County. In 1997, he became the first Republican to ever represent... Read More →
avatar for Commissioner David Porter

Commissioner David Porter

Commissioner, Railroad Commission of Texas
David J. Porter was elected to serve a six-year term as Texas Railroad Commissioner in  | November 2010. | | Since taking office, Commissioner Porter has been appointed to the Interstate Oil and  | Gas Compact Commission as the Official Representative of Texas by Texas Governor  | Rick Perry. He has also been appointed as Governor Perry’s official representative on  | the Interstate Mining Compact Commission and... Read More →
avatar for Cyrus Reed

Cyrus Reed

Conservation Director, Sierra Club, Lone Star Chapter
Cyrus Reed is the Conservation Director and Acting Chapter Director for the Lone Star Chapter  | Sierra Club. Cyrus has a Ph.D. in Geography from the University of Texas at Austin, with a  | focus on water policy and the dispute over the Rio Grande water with Mexico. Prior to becoming  | conservation director, he served as Sierra Club's lobbyist on energy and air quality issues  | during the 2005, 2007 legislative sessions... Read More →


Wednesday January 8, 2014 3:25pm - 4:35pm
Capitol View Terrace South
 
Thursday, January 9
 

8:00am

Keynote Breakfast with The Hon. Rick Santorum, former U.S. Senator and 2012 Republican Candidate for President
Special keynote program to be announced soon.

Speakers
avatar for The Honorable Rick Santorum

The Honorable Rick Santorum

Former U.S. Senator and 2012 Republican Presidential Candidate


Thursday January 9, 2014 8:00am - 9:30am
Ballroom

9:45am

Texas School Finance: Finding Real Efficiency and Stopping the Cycle of Litigation

Texas’ property tax driven, WADA based school finance structure has been repeatedly established as legally unstable over the last few decades. The state has endured a long series of lawsuits over the means and levels at which it funds its public free schools, but the legal wrangling has yet to produce a sustainable system. We will discuss how the school finance process can be taken out of the court rooms and put back in the hands of the Legislature, as well as meaningful reforms that could be implemented to bring true efficiency to Texas’ public schools.


Moderators
avatar for James Golsan

James Golsan

Policy analyst for the Center for Education Policy, Texas Public Policy Foundation
James Golsan is an education policy analyst at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. He joined the Foundation’s Center for Education Policy in October 2010 and contributes to the following issues: K-12 education growth; public education reform; and private school choice. Prior to joining the Foundation, Golsan completed his Master’s of Arts degree in English at Texas Tech University. His article, “The Detective as Superhero: A... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Representative James Frank

Representative James Frank

Texas House of Representatives
A longtime resident of Wichita Falls, James graduated from Rider High School and then later earned a degree in Finance from Texas A&M University. He then began an eleven year career in banking in Fort Worth and Wichita Falls. In 2000, James ventured into business with the help of local investors by purchasing a local metal fabrication business, BW Fabricators. Since that time, the company now known as Sharp Iron Group has grown through... Read More →
avatar for Gary Godsey

Gary Godsey

Executive Director, Association of Texas Professional Educators
Gary G. Godsey currently serves as the executive director of the Association of Texas Professional Educators (ATPE), the preeminent public educator association in the state of Texas and the largest independent education association in the nation. Gary was named to the role in May 2013. As ATPE’s executive director, Gary leads a team of more than 70 staff members who work to serve the needs of Texas public school educators and... Read More →
avatar for The Honorable Kent Grusendorf

The Honorable Kent Grusendorf

Executive Director, Texans for Real Efficiency and Equity in Education (TREE)
Kent Grusendorf was born near Abilene in Stanford, Texas, grew up in Waco and went to Arlington to attend college with only a band scholarship and $90 in his pocket.  He spent most of his professional life in Arlington as a businessman and successful entrepreneur.  He represented Arlington for twenty years, 1987-2007, in the Texas legislature where his primary interest and focus was education.   During his tenure in the... Read More →


Thursday January 9, 2014 9:45am - 10:55am
Capitol View Terrace North and South

9:45am

Economic Development: On the Backs of the Taxpayer or by their Bootstraps?

Local governments are committing an ever greater share of their resources towards economic development, but do these policies make economic sense? Join us as our panel of experts evaluate the pros and cons of local economic development in Texas.


Moderators
avatar for James Quintero

James Quintero

Director of the Center for Local Governance, Texas Public Policy Foundation
James Quintero is the Director of the Center for Local Governance at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, one of America’s premier conservative state-based think tanks. He has been with the Foundation since March 2008. During his time with the Foundation, his work has centered on: the budget, spending, debt, taxes, transparency, and pensions. Before coming to the Foundation, Quintero was a Graduate Research Assistant at Texas State... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Dr. Ben Powell

Dr. Ben Powell

Director, Free Market Institute at Texas Tech University
Benjamin Powell is the Director of the Free Market Institute at Texas Tech University and a Visiting  | Professor in the Rawls College of Business. He is the North American Editor of the Review of Austrian  | Economics, past President of the Association of Private Enterprise Education, and a senior fellow  | with the Independent Institute. He earned his B.S. in economics and finance from the University of  | Massachusetts at... Read More →
avatar for Bennett Sandlin

Bennett Sandlin

Executive Director, Texas Municipal League
Since October 2010, Bennett Sandlin has served as Executive Director of the Texas Municipal League.  | | Prior to Executive Director, Sandlin was General Counsel for TML where he helped cities through issues  | primarily in the fields of tax, economic development, budget, and general finance -- including the  | municipal hotel occupancy tax and the economic development sales tax. Sandlin authored the Revenue  | Manual for... Read More →
avatar for Carlton Schwab

Carlton Schwab

President and CEO, Texas Economic Development Council (TEDC)
Carlton Schwab has been President/CEO of the Texas Economic Development Council (TEDC) since  | February 1st, 1999. During that time, the 850-member TEDC has developed into a recognized leader in  | the professional development of its members and a powerful voice for economic development policy in  | the state of Texas. | | Prior to his tenure at the TEDC, Mr. Schwab was Director of Development at the LBJ School of ... Read More →
avatar for The Honorable Art Martinez de Vara

The Honorable Art Martinez de Vara

Mayor, Von Ormy, Texas
Art Martinez de Vara is the mayor of Von Ormy, Texas, business attorney, historian and publisher. He has a Doctor of Law and Master’s degree in Theology from St. Mary’s University. Born in Houston, Texas, Martinez de Vara attended the University of Texas at Austin, where he founded the internet service provider AustinNet. In 2003, Martinez de Vara returned to South Texas to attend law school and led the effort to organize the City... Read More →


Thursday January 9, 2014 9:45am - 10:55am
Capitol Ballroom A

11:10am

Immigration Reform: A Solution for Texas is a Solution for the Nation

Immigration is a persistent and confounding issue in the national debate. But is a solution really so far out of reach? Our panelists will discuss new ways forward on an enduring issue of contention. 


Moderators
avatar for John Fund

John Fund

National Review Online and American Spectator
John Fund is National Affairs Columnist for National Review magazine and a contributor to the  Fox News Channel. He is considered a notable expert on American politics and the nexus between politics and economics. | | He previously served as a columnist and editorial board member for The Wall Street Journal. He is the author of several books, including Stealing Elections: How Voter Fraud Threatens Our Democracy (Encounter Books, 2012) and... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Ike Brannon

Ike Brannon

Senior Fellow, George W. Bush Institute
Ike Brannon is a Senior Fellow of the George W. Bush Institute. He is currently president of the consulting  | firm Capital Policy Analytics and the head of the Savings and Retirement Foundation. He was previously  | director of economic policy as well as congressional relations for the American Action Forum. Prior to  | that he spent nearly a decade in government, serving as the chief economist for the House Energy and ... Read More →
avatar for Dr. Barrett Duke

Dr. Barrett Duke

Vice President for Public Policy and Research; Director of the Research Institute, Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, Southern Baptist Convention
Dr. Barrett Duke is the Vice President for Public Policy and Research and Director of the  | Research Institute of The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission, the Southern Baptist  | Convention’s agency for addressing social, moral, and religious liberty concerns. | | Barrett directs the ERLC’s advocacy efforts through its office in Washington, D.C.,  | and communicates Southern Baptist convictions to public... Read More →
avatar for Derrick Morgan

Derrick Morgan

Vice President of Domestic & Economic Policy, The Heritage Foundation
Derrick D. Morgan leads one of the nation’s most respected teams of public policy researchers and analysts as vice president for domestic and economic policy at The Heritage Foundation. Morgan directs all research on domestic issues, including the work of four major policy centers at Heritage: the Roe Institute for Economic Policy Studies, the DeVos Center for Religion and Civil Society, the Center for Health Policy Studies and the... Read More →


Thursday January 9, 2014 11:10am - 12:20am
Capitol View Terrace North and South

11:10am

Addressing Truancy: Keeping Kids In School and Off the Streets

How can schools, families and other support networks address truancy without the involvement of police officers, prosecutors, and courts? The link between school discipline problems like truancy and entry into the juvenile justice system is undeniable. Schools need to find ways to handle these problems that don’t involve exposing juveniles to the criminal justice system and initiating years of delinquency.


Moderators
avatar for Marc Levin

Marc Levin

Marc A. Levin is a director of the Center for Effective Justice at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. Levin is an attorney and an accomplished author on legal and public policy issues. Levin has served as a law clerk to Judge Will Garwood on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and Staff Attorney at the Texas Supreme Court. In 1999, he graduated with honors from the University of Texas with a B.A. in Plan II Honors and Government... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Senator Juan

Senator Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa

The Texas State Senate
State Senator Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa proudly represents the people of District 20. Born in  | McAllen, Texas, in Hidalgo County, Hinojosa is the eldest of eight children. He attended  | Mission ISD schools as a child and worked as a farm worker during his teen years. He led the  | Mission Eagles football team as their quarterback, and after graduating, Hinojosa volunteered to  | serve in the U.S. Marine Corps.  | | In... Read More →
avatar for The Honorable Steve Teske

The Honorable Steve Teske

Chief Judge, Juvenile Court of Clayton County, GA
Judge Teske was appointed to the bench in 1999. He earned his Bachelors, Masters,  | and Juris Doctor degrees from Georgia State University. He was Chief Parole Officer  | in Atlanta, Deputy Director of Field Services for the Board of Pardons and Paroles,  | and Trial attorney in the law firm of Boswell & Teske LLP. He also served as Special  | Assistant Attorney General prosecuting child abuse and neglect cases and... Read More →
avatar for Ryan Turner

Ryan Turner

Texas Municipal Courts Education Center, General Counsel and Director of Education
Ryan Kellus Turner is General Counsel and Director of Education for the Texas Municipal Courts Education Center. Prior to joining the Center, he served as Briefing Attorney for Judge Sharon Keller at the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals. Mr. Turner obtained his juris doctorate from Southern Methodist University School of Law. He received his Bachelor's Degree in Psychology with highest honors from St. Edward's University, Austin, Texas, where he... Read More →
avatar for Representative James White

Representative James White

Texas House of Representatives
James White is a native Texan and grew up in Houston, where he attended public schools. He graduated  | with honors from Prairie View A&M University in 1986 with a degree in political science and military  | science. The United States Congress subsequently commissioned James as an infantry officer in the U.S.  | Army, where he served his country in assignments throughout the world, most notably from 1987-90 in  | the... Read More →


Thursday January 9, 2014 11:10am - 12:20pm
Capitol Ballroom A

12:30pm

Keynote Luncheon with Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal
Special keynote program to be announced soon.

Speakers
avatar for Governor Bobby Jindal

Governor Bobby Jindal

Louisiana Governor


Thursday January 9, 2014 12:30pm - 1:45pm
Ballroom

2:00pm

A Second Act for Criminal Justice Reform

The panel will discuss the next stage in ensuring a corrections systems that keeps Texas streets safe. The 2007 reforms to Texas criminal justice policy have been wildly successful and made Texas a national model for criminal justice reform. But more work needs to done to ensure that we are maximizing public safety in Texas.


Moderators
avatar for Marc Levin

Marc Levin

Marc A. Levin is a director of the Center for Effective Justice at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. Levin is an attorney and an accomplished author on legal and public policy issues. Levin has served as a law clerk to Judge Will Garwood on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and Staff Attorney at the Texas Supreme Court. In 1999, he graduated with honors from the University of Texas with a B.A. in Plan II Honors and Government... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Adam Gelb

Adam Gelb

Director of Public Safety Performance Project, Pew Charitable Trusts
Adam Gelb is director of the Public Safety Performance Project, which helps states advance  | policies and practices in adult and juvenile sentencing and corrections that protect public safety,  | hold offenders accountable, and control corrections costs.  | | As the project lead, Gelb oversees Pew’s assistance to states seeking a greater public safety  | return on their corrections spending. He also supervises a... Read More →
avatar for The Honorable Bill Hammond

The Honorable Bill Hammond

President and CEO, Texas Association of Business
Bill Hammond is President and Chief Executive Officer of Texas Association of Business & Chambers of Commerce (TAB/TABCC) and has led the state’s most influential business and chamber organization since April 1998. At the helm of TAB, Hammond has worked aggressively and successfully to ensure a strong pro-business tax and regulatory climate in Texas. His proven track record of leadership in support of Texas business includes the... Read More →
avatar for Representative Abel Hererro

Representative Abel Hererro

Texas House of Representatives
First elected in 2004, State Representative Abel Herrero is now proudly serving his fourth term  | representing the people of District 34. During his time in the Texas House of Representatives,  | Herrero has served on committees that include the Committee for Appropriations, Human  | Services, Defense Affairs and now serves as Chairman of the Criminal Jurisprudence  | Committee. Representative Herrero is dedicated to... Read More →
avatar for Representative Tan Parker

Representative Tan Parker

Corrections Committee Chairman, Texas House of Representatives
Currently in his fourth term, Tan Parker represents House District 63, which  | stretches from the bluebonnets of Flower Mound to the unique dining of Roanoke  | through the Texas Motor Speedway and the open horse country of Argyle and  | Bartonville. Initially elected to office in 2006, Parker is an effective champion for  | economic development, job creation, further property tax relief, appraisal reform, ... Read More →


Thursday January 9, 2014 2:00pm - 3:10pm
Capitol Ballroom A

2:00pm

Innovation in Indigent Care

Does everyone need health insurance? This panel looks at alternatives to insurance and ways to strengthen the safety net, from programs for low-income patients like CareLink in Bexar County, to coordinated charity care in Collin County, to a fundamental redesign of Medicaid.


Moderators
avatar for The Honorable Arlene Wohlgemuth

The Honorable Arlene Wohlgemuth

Executive Director of TPPF and Director of the Center for Health Care Policy, Texas Public Policy Foundation
Arlene Wohlgemuth is Executive Director and director of the Foundation's Center for Health Care Policy. She served 10 years as a state representative for district 58. During the 77th legislative session, she served as chairman of Appropriations Article II Subcommittee (Health and Human Services), vice-chairman of Calendars, CBO for Human Services, and member of the Select Committee for Health Care Expenditures. Wohlgemuth authored HB 2292, the... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Art Auer

Art Auer

Executive Director, Collin-Fannin County Medical Society
Mr. Auer is Executive Director of the Collin-Fannin County Medical Society, a post he created in  | partnership with the society’s leaders in 2008. It is the most recent in a series of positions Mr. Auer has held in medical society executive management, including positions with the Los Angeles County Medical Association, the San Joaquin Medical Society, and the Palm Beach Medical Society. | | Mr. Auer played a critical... Read More →
avatar for George Hernandez

George Hernandez

President and CEO, University Health System
George B. Hernández, Jr., JD, is the President/Chief Executive Officer of University  | Health System, an academic medical center and countywide hospital district located  | in Bexar County, Texas. The Health System serves as the principal partner of The  | University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio and helps train over 2500  | health care professionals annually. | | University Health System operates... Read More →
avatar for Senator Charles Schwertner

Senator Charles Schwertner

The Texas State Senate
Senator Charles Schwertner is a physician, family man, and a life-long conservative. | | In 2010, Schwertner was first elected to serve the people of House District 20 in the Texas  | House of Representatives, where he was a member of the powerful House Committee on  | Appropriations as well as the House Committee on Public Health. In 2012, Schwertner  | won the Republican Primary for the Texas Senate (District 5) with nearly... Read More →


Thursday January 9, 2014 2:00pm - 3:10pm
Capitol View Terrace South

2:00pm

A Rising Tide: Local Government Debt

Cities, counties, school districts, and special districts in Texas are amassing local debt at an alarming rate, potentially jeopardizing the success of the Texas Model. Join us as our panel of experts explore ways to slow the growth of local debt and move Texas in a more sustainable direction. 


Moderators
avatar for James Quintero

James Quintero

Director of the Center for Local Governance, Texas Public Policy Foundation
James Quintero is the Director of the Center for Local Governance at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, one of America’s premier conservative state-based think tanks. He has been with the Foundation since March 2008. During his time with the Foundation, his work has centered on: the budget, spending, debt, taxes, transparency, and pensions. Before coming to the Foundation, Quintero was a Graduate Research Assistant at Texas State... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Beth Hallmark

Beth Hallmark

Manager, Web and Editorial, Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts
Beth Hallmark joined the Comptroller’s office in April 2007. She serves as the Creative  | director and manager in the Data Services Division, where she works with the award-winning Web, Editorial, Data and Graphics teams to produce a wide range of print and  | electronic materials to assist citizens doing business with the Comptroller’s office.  | | In her position, Hallmark has helped lead the agency’s... Read More →
avatar for The Honorable Keith Self

The Honorable Keith Self

County Judge, Collin County
Keith Self has served as the County Judge, Collin County, since January,  | 2007. Collin County has more than 800,000 citizens and is one of the fastest  | growing counties in the nation. | | Self is a fifth-generation Texan who graduated from Tascosa High School | in Amarillo in 1971. Appointed to the United State Military Academy at West  | Point by Congressman Bob Price, Self graduated in 1975 and went on to serve  | on... Read More →
avatar for Peggy Venable

Peggy Venable

Texas State Director, Americans for Prosperity
Peggy Venable has worked in public policy in the government, the political and the private sector arenas for  | over 35 years. | | In 2010, Campaigns and Elections named Venable as one of the top 25 “Texas influencers.” In 2011, she  | was named to the University Star Hall of Fame at Texas State University. In 2012, she was identified as one  | of the most influential third parties on Twitter during the legislative... Read More →
avatar for Ben Wilterdink

Ben Wilterdink

Research Analyst for the Center for State Fiscal Reform, American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC)
Ben Wilterdink is a Research Analyst for the Center for State Fiscal Reform at the American Legislative  | Exchange Council. In his current role, Ben collaborates with state legislators and tax and fiscal policy  | experts to help develop fiscally responsible, free-market, and pro-growth policy solutions for state and  | local governments. Ben’s work has appeared in numerous publications including Forbes... Read More →


Thursday January 9, 2014 2:00pm - 3:10pm
Capitol View Terrace North

3:25pm

Is Texas Finished with Improving its Protection of Property Rights?

Last session saw little movement toward improving property rights, while several bills threatened to move Texas in the other direction. Has Texas accomplished all it needs to do in protecting property rights? Or it there more work to be done? 


Moderators
avatar for Bill Peacock

Bill Peacock

Bill Peacock is the vice president of research & planning and the director of the Center for Economic Freedom at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. He has been with the Foundation since February 2005. Bill directs the research of the Foundation to ensure its accuracy, integrity, and application of free market principles to the issues facing Texas and the nation. His own research focuses on economic freedom and growth, property rights, civil... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Luke Ellis

Luke Ellis

Attorney at Law
Luke Ellis is recognized as one of Texas’s top lawyers practicing in the area of eminent domain. He focuses exclusively on representing Texas property owners facing condemnation and eminent domain proceedings. His clients include Fortune 500 companies, individual owners of shopping centers, office buildings, convenience store / gas stations, industrial centers, developing subdivisions, ranches, residential and... Read More →
avatar for Scott Houston

Scott Houston

Deputy Executive Director and General Counsel, Texas Municipal League
Scott Houston is presently serving as Deputy Executive Director and General Counsel for the Texas  | Municipal League and General Counsel for the Texas City Attorneys Association. He has served as an  | adjunct professor of political science at Texas State University’s M.P.A. program, and his work on open  | meetings law has been published in the Texas Tech Administrative Law Journal. Scott has received the  | Texas... Read More →
avatar for Senator Leticia Van de Putte

Senator Leticia Van de Putte

The Texas State Senate
Senator Leticia Van de Putte represents a large portion of Bexar County. A former-five term state  | representative, she has represented Senate District 26 since 1999. On January 8, 2013, she was unanimously  | elected by her colleagues to serve as President Pro Tempore of the Senate’s 83rd Regular Session, and served as  | Governor for a Day on May 4, 2013. | | After the Regular Session, she was named to Texas... Read More →


Thursday January 9, 2014 3:25pm - 4:35pm
Capitol View Terrace South

3:25pm

Where's the Water?

As Texas endured three years of extreme drought, state and federal regulations  continue to impede the development of new water supplies. Come learn how to break this legal logjam. 


Moderators
avatar for Kathleen Hartnett White

Kathleen Hartnett White

Distinguished Senior Fellow-in-Residence & Director, Armstrong Center for Energy & the Environment, Texas Public Policy Foundation
Kathleen Hartnett White joined the Texas Public Policy Foundation in January 2008. She is a Distinguished Senior Fellow-in-Residence and Director of the Armstrong Center for Energy & the Environment. Prior to joining the Foundation, White served a six-year term as Chairman and Commissioner of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ). With regulatory jurisdiction over air quality, water quality, water rights & utilities... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Representative Doug Miller

Representative Doug Miller

Texas House of Representatives
Doug Miller is State Representative from District 73 which is comprised of Comal, Gillespie, and  | Kendall Counties. He is serving his third term in the Texas House of Representatives. In January  | 2013, he was appointed by Speaker Joe Straus to serve as Vice Chair of the House Committee  | On Special Purpose Districts and as a member of the Calendars and Natural Resources  | Committees (Environmental Flows Study Group... Read More →
avatar for W. Richard Roth

W. Richard Roth

Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer, SJW Corp., SJW Land Company, SJWTX, Inc., Texas Water Alliance, Ltd., and San Jose Water Company
Richard Roth is the Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer of SJW  | Corp., SJW Land Company, SJWTX, Inc., Texas Water Alliance, Ltd., and San Jose  | Water Company, which is one of the largest private water utilities in the United States  | serving one million people in Silicon Valley. He has been with SJW Corp. since 1990  | when he joined the company as its Chief Financial Officer.  | | Mr. Roth was raised... Read More →
avatar for Carlos Rubinstein

Carlos Rubinstein

Chariman, Texas Water Development Board
Carlos Rubinstein was appointed chairman of the Texas Water Development Board by Governor Rick Perry on September 1, 2013. His term will expire February 1, 2017. | | Carlos RubinStein served as a commissioner of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) from 2009–2013. He is the Texas representative to the Western States Water Council; the Border Governors’ Conference Sustainable Development worktable; the Good... Read More →
avatar for Tim Timmerman

Tim Timmerman

Chairman of the Board, LCRA
Timothy T. Timmerman of Austin is a real estate investor/developer and owns Commerce Texas Properties, Inc. He developed the Star Ranch Community and Golf Course north of Austin. He is a certified public accountant and holds a Texas real estate broker’s license. He is a member of the board of directors and chairman of the Audit Committee for Citizens, Inc., a New York Stock Exchange company. He serves on the board of the Round Rock... Read More →


Thursday January 9, 2014 3:25pm - 4:35pm
Capitol Ballroom AB

3:25pm

Reclaiming the Tenth Amendment

The Tenth Amendment was gravely damaged by the Progressive and New Deal movements’ expansion of government control over economic activity, through “cooperative” federal-state programs, and the profusion of government-created monopolies and cartels. This panel focuses on ways to reduce the disastrous intermingling of federal and state functions, and on how to eliminate barriers to competition at state and federal level, and thereby reduce the constituency for federal overreach. 


Moderators
avatar for Karen Lugo

Karen Lugo

Director of the Center for Tenth Amendment Action, Texas Public Policy Foundation
Karen Lugo is the Director of the Center for Tenth Amendment Action at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. She joined the Foundation in September 2013. As Co-Director of the Center for Constitutional Jurisprudence Center in California, Lugo has submitted circuit-level and Supreme Courtamicus briefs on such issues as Structural Separation of Powers; Federalism, Commerce Clause, and Police Powers; FISA Surveillance; Healthcare Reform... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Adam Berry

Adam Berry

Regulatory Policy Director & Special Counsel for Governor Mike Pence
Mr. Berry is Regulatory Policy Director & Special Counsel in the office of Indiana Governor Mike Pence. Previously, he litigated national labor and employment matters at a private firm, and as Associate General Counsel at the Indiana Department of Insurance, Mr. Berry oversaw the department’s enforcement division.  As policy director, Mr. Berry assists with the development and implementation of Governor Pence’s regulatory... Read More →
avatar for Representative Matt Krause

Representative Matt Krause

Texas House of Representatives
Representative Matt Krause is President of Northwest Tarrant Republican Club, a Founding Board Member of American Kids, GOP Precinct Chair for Tarrant County Precinct #4429, Adjunct Professor at Liberty University where he teaches Government and Criminal Justice, a member of the San Diego Christian College Board of Trustees and Executive Director at Torch of Freedom Foundation. Representative Krause’s work has been featured on... Read More →
avatar for Mario Loyola

Mario Loyola

Chief Counsel, Texas Public Policy Foundation
Mario Loyola is Chief Counsel to the Texas Public Policy Foundation, responsible for  | overseeing TPPF's work in areas related to constitutional law and federalism, including  | constitutional litigation. Mario Loyola joined the Foundation in July 2010 as founding director  | of the Center for Tenth Amendment Action, focusing on energy and environment, healthcare,  | and other federalism issues. Mario began his career in... Read More →
avatar for The Honorable Steve Toth

The Honorable Steve Toth

Texas House of Representatives
Representative Steve Toth's father, a first generation American, taught his family the importance of faith,  | family and hard work. Representative Toth took in those lessons and after graduating from high school,  | joined his father and brothers in the family business. In 1984, he married his wife, Babette, and later had  | three children.  | | Today, he runs two companies - Acclaim Pools, a design build firm, and My Pool... Read More →


Thursday January 9, 2014 3:25pm - 4:35pm
Capitol View Terrace North
 
Friday, January 10
 

8:00am

VIP Breakfast with U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (invitation only)
Speakers
avatar for Senator Ted Cruz

Senator Ted Cruz

United States Senator


Friday January 10, 2014 8:00am - 9:00am
Creekside

9:00am

Keynote Breakfast with U.S. Senator Ted Cruz
Special keynote program to be announced soon.

Speakers
avatar for Senator Ted Cruz

Senator Ted Cruz

United States Senator


Friday January 10, 2014 9:00am - 9:30am
Ballroom

9:45am

Economic Development, Texas Style

Texas spends less per capita on economic development than most other states, yet leads the nation in jobs created. What works best in attracting jobs, the traditional economic development programs, such as tax breaks and subsidies, or the Texas Model approach of less regulation and lower taxes? This panel will examine this question and where the balance between these two approaches should be. 


Moderators
avatar for Bill Peacock

Bill Peacock

Bill Peacock is the vice president of research & planning and the director of the Center for Economic Freedom at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. He has been with the Foundation since February 2005. Bill directs the research of the Foundation to ensure its accuracy, integrity, and application of free market principles to the issues facing Texas and the nation. His own research focuses on economic freedom and growth, property rights, civil... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Brandon Aghamalian

Brandon Aghamalian

Brandon Aghamalian is an expert on local government, transportation, economic development, property tax, and cultural arts issues. As President of Focused Advocacy his emphasis is representing local governments before the Texas Legislature. Prior to becoming a Partner at Focused Advocacy, Aghamalian founded and managed a local government advocacy practice group, representing dozens of municipalities before the state. Additionally, he worked on... Read More →
avatar for Senator Brian Birdwell

Senator Brian Birdwell

The Texas State Senate
Lt. Col. (Ret.) Brian Birdwell is a native Texan, decorated military veteran and lifelong conservative Republican currently representing Texas Senate District 22. Brian is a native of Fort Worth and a resident of Granbury. He is a graduate of Lamar University, Command and General Staff College and the University of Missouri-Kansas City, where he earned a Master of Public Administration degree. As the Distinguished Military Graduate of the Lamar... Read More →
avatar for Matt Mitchell

Matt Mitchell

Senior Research Fellow, Mercatus Center at George Mason University
Matthew Mitchell is a senior research fellow and the lead scholar on the Project for the Study  | of American Capitalism at the Mercatus Center. He is also an adjunct professor of economics at  | George Mason University. He specializes in economic freedom and economic growth, public-choice economics, and the economics of government favoritism toward particular businesses. | | Mitchell has testified before the US Congress, and his... Read More →
avatar for Representative Jim Murphy

Representative Jim Murphy

Texas House of Representatives
Jim Murphy serves in the Texas House, representing District 133 in West Houston. Jim is in his  | third term. | | Representative Murphy serves on the Committees Small Business and Economic Development and  | Higher Education and is the Chairman of the subcommittee on Manufacturing. | | Jim’s legislative work has been recognized by the National Coalition for Capital, Texas Right to Life,  | and the Texas Association of... Read More →


Friday January 10, 2014 9:45am - 10:55am
Capitol Ballroom A

9:45am

The ObamaCare Exchanges

Health plans purchased on the new federal health care exchanges began coverage on Jan. 1, 2014, but a host of unanswered questions remain. Are the exchanges working? Are they legal? How many people have enrolled? What is the role of the exchange “navigators”?


Moderators
avatar for John Davidson

John Davidson

Policy analyst for the Center for Health Care Policy, Texas Public Policy Foundation
John Davidson is a health care policy analyst in the Center for Health Care Policy at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. He joined the Foundation in October 2012. Davidson began his career in journalism, and has worked as a print and online reporter, managing and executive editor, and freelance writer for a wide variety of publications. He was Executive Editor for Issue Media Group, where he oversaw 19 weekly publications in the U.S. and Canada... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Michael Carvin

Michael Carvin

Partner, Jones Day
Mike Carvin focuses on constitutional, appellate, civil rights, and civil litigation against the  | federal government. He has argued numerous cases in the United States Supreme Court and in  | virtually every federal appeals court. These cases include the recent constitutional challenge  | to the Affordable Care Act and the decisions invalidating Sarbanes-Oxley's accounting board,  | preventing the Justice Department from... Read More →
avatar for Becky Parker

Becky Parker

Health Reform Director, MHBT
Becky Parker is the Health Reform Director at MHBT, Inc., central  | Texas’ largest privately-held employee benefits specialization group. She  | directs all corporate strategy and communication pertaining to the Patient  | Protection & Affordable Care Act for MHBT and its clients. She has  | worked as an employee benefits advisor since 1992.  | | Becky was one of the first employee benefits professionals to... Read More →
avatar for Julia Rathgeber

Julia Rathgeber

Commissioner of Insurance, Texas Department of Insurance
Julia Rathgeber was appointed Texas Insurance Commissioner effective May 27, 2013, by  | Governor Rick Perry. The appointment was confirmed by the Texas Senate on June 14, 2013. |   | She served as deputy chief of staff in the Office of Lt. Governor David Dewhurst where her  | duties included reviewing all legislation before the Texas Senate. She has 22 years experience  | in managing office staff at various agencies. She is a... Read More →


Friday January 10, 2014 9:45am - 10:55am
Capitol View Terrace North and South

11:10am

The Budget Realities of the 83rd Legislative Session

The Texas model of low taxes and limited government has transformed the Lone Star State into America’s economic engine; but after last session’s spending spree, some have begun to wonder if Texas is in danger of becoming a victim of its own success. Join us as our experts examine the state’s new two-year budget and the battles surrounding its creation.


Moderators
avatar for The Honorable Talmadge Heflin

The Honorable Talmadge Heflin

Director of the Center for Fiscal Policy, Texas Public Policy Foundation
The Honorable Talmadge Heflin is the Director of the Foundation’s Center for Fiscal Policy. Prior to joining the Foundation, Heflin served the people of Harris County as a state representative for 11 terms. Well regarded as a legislative leader on budget and tax issues by Democratic and Republican speakers alike, he for several terms was the only House member to serve on both the Ways and Means and Appropriations committees.  In the... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for The Honorable Chuck DeVore

The Honorable Chuck DeVore

Vice President for Policy, Texas Public Policy Foundation
Chuck DeVore is Vice President for Policy at the Texas Public Policy Foundation. From 2004  | to 2010, DeVore represented almost 500,000 people in the California State Assembly. He was  | the Vice Chairman of the Assembly Committee on Revenue and Taxation and served on the  | Budget Committee. DeVore worked in the aerospace industry for 13 years as an executive.  | DeVore served as a Reagan White House appointee in the... Read More →
avatar for Dr. Brian Domitrovic

Dr. Brian Domitrovic

Professor, Sam Houston State University
Brian Domitrovic is chairman of the department of history at Sam Houston State University and Senior  | Associate at the Laffer Center for Supply-Side Economics. He is author of Econoclasts (2009), the  | standard history of supply-side economics. His writing has appeared in the Wall Street Journal and  | Investor’s Business Daily as well on Forbes.com, where his column appears biweekly. He is currently  | writing a book... Read More →
avatar for Representative John Otto

Representative John Otto

Texas House of Representatives
Representative John Otto was first elected to the Texas House of Representatives in November  | 2004. Representative Otto serves on the House Appropriations Committee as chair of the  | Education Subcommittee and is the vice-chair of the House Committee on Ways and Means.  | During the 83rd Session, Speaker Joe Straus named Representative Otto for the third consecutive  | time to the five member House Conference Committee on... Read More →
avatar for Representative Sylvester Turner

Representative Sylvester Turner

Texas House of Representatives
Representative Sylvester Turner was raised in the Acres Homes community in northwest  | Houston. He attended the University of Houston and Harvard Law School before joining the  | law firm of Fulbright & Jaworski. He later founded the Houston law firm of Barnes & Turner  | in 1983. Representative Turner was elected to the Texas House of Representatives in 1988  | to serve the people of House District 139 in Harris... Read More →


Friday January 10, 2014 11:10am - 12:20pm
Capitol View Terrace North and South

11:10am

The Crisis of Poor Student Learning

The landmark national study, Academically Adrift, shocked the higher-ed world when it demonstrated that today 36 percent of students, after four years invested in college,  show little to no increase in fundamental academic skills (critical thinking, complex reasoning, and clear writing). These findings are based on students’ performance on the Collegiate Learning Assessment (CLA). This panel will consider the following recommendation: Require all Texas public colleges and universities to administer the CLA to all students during their freshman and senior years, and publicize the results.


Moderators
avatar for Dr. Thomas Lindsay

Dr. Thomas Lindsay

Director of the Center for Higher Education, Texas Public Policy Foundation
Tom Lindsay, Ph.D., is director of the Foundation’s Center for Higher Education. He has more than two decades’ experience in education management and instruction, including service as a dean, provost, and college president. In 2006, Lindsay joined the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) staff as director of the agency’s signature initiative, We the People. He was named Deputy Chairman and COO of the NEH in... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Dr. Steven Balch

Dr. Steven Balch

Director, Institute for the Study of Western Civilization, Texas Tech University
Dr. Stephen H. Balch became the director of The Institute for the Study of Western Civilization  | in September 2012. Before coming to Texas Tech, Dr. Balch served for twenty-five years as  | founding president and chairman of the National Association of Scholars (NAS), a Princeton,  | New Jersey based organization of higher education professionals dedicated to the traditional  | principles of liberal arts education... Read More →
avatar for Dr. Julian Vasquez Heilig

Dr. Julian Vasquez Heilig

Associate Professor of Educational Policy and Planning, University of Texas at Austin
Julian Vasquez Heilig is an award-winning researcher and teacher. He is currently an Associate  | Professor of Educational Policy and Planning and African and African Diaspora Studies (by  | courtesy) at the University of Texas at Austin. He is also a Faculty Affiliate of the Center for  | Mexican American Studies and the Warfield Center for African and African American Studies  | at the University of Texas at Austin. Since... Read More →
avatar for Dr. Robert Koons

Dr. Robert Koons

Professor of Philosophy, University of Texas at Austin
Rob Koons is a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Texas at Austin, where he has taught since 1987. Koons specializes in metaphysics, philosophical logic and philosophy of religion. He is the author of two books, Paradoxes of Belief and Realism Regained, and the co-editor of the The Waning of Materialism (Oxford University Press, 2010). Koons earned a B. A. in philosophy at Michigan State, a B.A. with First Class Honours in Philosophy... Read More →
avatar for Dr. Richard Vedder

Dr. Richard Vedder

Director, Center for College Affordability and Productivity
Richard Vedder is Distinguished Professor of Economics at Ohio University, Director of the Center for  | College Affordability and Productivity and an adjunct scholar at the American Enterprise Institute.  | Dr. Vedder has written widely on American economic history, authoring such books as Out of Work:  | Unemployment and Government in Twentieth-Century America and The American Economy in Historical  | Perspective. He... Read More →


Friday January 10, 2014 11:10am - 12:20pm
Capitol Ballroom A

12:30pm

Closing Luncheon with Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott
Special keynote program to be announced soon.

Speakers
avatar for Attorney General Greg Abbott

Attorney General Greg Abbott

Texas Attorney General


Friday January 10, 2014 12:30pm - 1:45pm
Ballroom