Education A State Capitals Roundup

Calif. Regent Ward Connerly Closes Controversial Tenure

By Joetta L. Sack — January 25, 2005 1 min read

After 12 years on the University of California’s board of regents, Ward Connerly, who drew both praise and criticism for his views on race in education, attended his final meeting last week as his term expired.

Ward Connerly

Mr. Connerly, 65, was appointed to a 12-year term in 1993 by then-Gov. Pete Wilson, a Republican.

He is best known for his work opposing affirmative action and racial preferences, including a 1995 regents’ vote banning race-based admissions in the prestigious 10-campus University of California system. Later, he helped lead the drive for Proposition 209, a 1996 voter-approved initiative that banned racial preferences by state and local government in employment, education, and contracting.

Mr. Connerly is expected to focus his efforts on a Michigan initiative to ban the use of race as a factor in college admissions and government hiring.

A version of this article appeared in the January 26, 2005 edition of Education Week