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Roy Romer

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Title: Roy Romer  
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Subject: Governor of Colorado, Richard Lamm, Democratic Governors Association, Strong American Schools, Colorado gubernatorial election, 1998
Collection: 1928 Births, American Presbyterians, American School Superintendents, Colorado Democrats, Colorado Lawyers, Colorado State Senators, Colorado State University Alumni, Democratic National Committee Chairs, Democratic Party State Governors of the United States, Governors of Colorado, Living People, Los Angeles Unified School District, Members of the Colorado House of Representatives, People from Finney County, Kansas, State Treasurers of Colorado, United States Air Force Officers, University of Colorado Boulder Alumni, Yale University Alumni
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Roy Romer

Roy R. Romer
Romer in 2010
39th Governor of Colorado
In office
January 13, 1987 – January 12, 1999
Lieutenant Mike Callihan
Samuel H. Cassidy
Gail Schoettler
Preceded by Richard Lamm
Succeeded by William F. Owens
Colorado State Treasurer
In office
Preceded by Sam Brown
Succeeded by Gail Schoettler
Superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District
In office
Preceded by Ramon C. Cortines
Succeeded by David Brewer
Personal details
Born (1928-10-31) October 31, 1928
Garden City, Kansas
Nationality American
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Beatrice Romer
Children 7 children
Residence Holly, Colorado
Alma mater

(B.A.) Colorado State University

(J.D.) University of Colorado Law School
Military service
Service/branch United States Air Force
Battles/wars Korean War

Roy R. Romer (born October 31, 1928, in Garden City, Kansas, United States) was the 39th Governor of Colorado and served as the superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District from 2001 to 2006.


  • Family and education 1
  • Early professional activities 2
  • Political career 3
    • Colorado state government 3.1
    • National political positions 3.2
    • Romer v. Evans 3.3
    • Romer v. Grant 3.4
  • Recent professional activities 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

Family and education

Romer grew up in the southeastern Colorado town of Holly. Romer received a bachelor's degree in agricultural economics from Colorado State University in 1950, where he served for one year as President of the Associated Students of Colorado State University. He later received a law degree from the University of Colorado School of Law in 1952. He also studied ethics at Yale University, and was a legal officer in the U.S. Air Force. He and his wife, Bea, have seven children and 19 grandchildren and one greatgrandchild. His son Paul Romer is an economist, and his son Chris Romer, was elected to a Colorado State Senate seat from Denver in November 2006.

Early professional activities

In the 1950s and 1960s, Romer was an attorney in Denver. He was also active in the management of his family's agricultural operations throughout Colorado. Romer has continued and is also the owner, with one of his sons, of a chain of John Deere equipment stores in Colorado, Virginia and Florida. He helped develop Colorado's Centennial Airport, ran a flying school and owned and operated a ski area.

Political career

Colorado state government

Romer served in the Colorado House of Representatives from 1958 to 1962 and in the Colorado Senate from 1962 to 1966. Romer was Colorado State Treasurer from 1977 to 1987 (winning re-election to full four-year terms in 1978 and 1982), and a member of the governor's cabinet. Romer was first elected as governor in 1986, and re-elected in 1990 and 1994; he was the last Colorado governor to serve three terms.[1] In 1997, Romer, along with Utah Governor Michael O. Leavitt and Wyoming Governor Jim Geringer, led a bipartisan team of 19 state governors in the founding of Western Governors University.

National political positions

Romer chaired the Democratic Governors Association in 1991. In 1992, he was co-chairman of the Democratic National Platform Committee. Romer served as national vice chair of the Democratic Leadership Council, and was a national co-chairman of the Clinton-Gore '96 campaign. In January 1997, Romer was elected to serve as general chairman of the Democratic National Committee.

From 1992 to 1993, Romer served as chair of the National Governors Association. In 1994-1995 he chaired the Education Commission of the States, and in 1995, was part of a bipartisan effort by the nation's governors to reform Medicaid.

Romer v. Evans

In law, his name is associated with the anti-discrimination suit Romer v. Evans that was brought to the Supreme Court during his tenure as Governor of Colorado. Though he was opposed to the amendment to the Constitution of Colorado in question, he was forced to defend it in his position as Governor.

Romer v. Grant

In October 2004, Roy Romer and the Los Angeles Unified School District filed suit in the United States District Court, Central District of California against David Grant, a former student of the Los Angeles Unified School District. The suit cited false endorsement of the Lanham Act, violation of the Can-Spam Act, California Statutory Cyber Piracy, violation of the right of publicity under California statutory and common law, and California statutory unfair competition.

The lawsuit alleged David Grant attempted to lure the district's 700,000 students to a pornographic website. Roy Romer and the Los Angeles Unified School District subsequently settled the suit by paying Grant $360,000.00 in exchange for the domain name

Recent professional activities

On June 7, 2000,[2] he became Superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District, where he served for six years. On October 12, 2006, the Los Angeles Board of Education unanimously named David L. Brewer III as his successor.

A May 8, 2006 Los Angeles Times article suggested naming a school after Romer.[3] LAUSD announced that Roy Romer Middle School would open in 2008 in the eastern San Fernando Valley.[4]

On April 25, 2007, Roy Romer began his service as the chairman and lead spokesman for Strong American Schools, a nonprofit project responsible for running Ed in 08, an information and initiative campaign funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and the Eli and Edythe Broad foundation, aimed at encouraging 2008 presidential contenders to include education in their campaign policies.[5]


  1. ^ The Colorado constitution now limits governors to two consecutive terms and eight years in office (
  2. ^
  3. ^ Generally Speaking, It's Right to Honor Romer - Los Angeles Times
  4. ^ Project Details
  5. ^ NYTimes: Billionaires Start $60 Million Schools Effort
  • Colorado State Archives
  • NYTimes: Billionaires Start $60 Million Schools Effort
  • National Governor's Association
  • The Political Graveyard

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Sam Brown
State Treasurer of Colorado
January 20, 1977–January 13, 1987
Succeeded by
Gail Schoettler
Preceded by
Richard Lamm
Governor of Colorado
January 13, 1987–January 12, 1999
Succeeded by
William F. Owens
Preceded by
John Ashcroft
Chairman of the National Governors Association
Succeeded by
Carroll A. Campbell, Jr.
South Carolina
Academic offices
Preceded by
Ramon C. Cortines
Superintendent of the
Los Angeles Unified School District

Succeeded by
David L. Brewer III
Party political offices
Preceded by
Robert Lee Knous
Democratic Party nominee for United States Senator from Colorado (Class 2)
Succeeded by
Floyd K. Haskell
Preceded by
Richard Lamm
Democratic Party Nominee for Governor of Colorado
1986, 1990, 1994
Succeeded by
Gail Schoettler
Preceded by
Christopher Dodd
Donald Fowler
Democratic National Committee General Chairman
with Steve Grossman
Succeeded by
Edward G. Rendell
Joe Andrew
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