Chairman, National Math + Science Initiative
An attorney, Tom Luce received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from Southern Methodist University and has been honored with the SMU Law School and University Distinguished Alumni Awards. He was a founding partner and managing partner of the law firm of Hughes & Luce, LLP until his retirement from the firm in 1997.
In addition to his active law practice, at various times Mr. Luce has served on the boards or as guest lecturer at a number of schools of higher education, including the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, the LBJ School of Public Affairs at The University of Texas at Austin, and Southern Methodist University.
Mr. Luce served as United States Assistant Secretary of Education for Planning, Evaluation and Policy Development from July 1, 2005 until his resignation as of September 1, 2006. He then served as Chief Executive Officer of the National Math and Science Initiative, Inc. from 2007 to 2011.
Following his resignation from the Department of Education, Mr. Luce rejoined the board of Dell Inc. He is the longest serving outside member, having previously served on the Dell board from 1991 until 2005. He also has served on the boards of the Texas Education Reform Caucus and multiple community and charitable organizations. He served as a member of the National Commission on Teaching and America’s Future and on the Executive Committee of the Dallas Citizens Council, an organization composed of CEOs of Dallas’ largest businesses. In addition, the United States Senate appointed Mr. Luce a member of the Library of Congress Trust Fund Board where he served until 2005.
Mr. Luce also has been appointed five times to major posts by Texas governors, including Chief Justice pro tempore of the Texas Supreme Court. He is perhaps best known for his role as the Chief of Staff of the Texas Select Committee of Public Education, which produced one of the first major reform efforts among public schools in 1984.
Mr. Luce was a co-founder of the National Center for Educational Accountability and served as Chairman of the Board from its inception until 2005. He also founded Communities Just for the Kids and served as its Chairman until 2005. In 1995 Mr. Luce wrote Now or Never – How We Can Save Our Public Schools, a book that defined his educational philosophy and outlined a preliminary plan for educational reform that called for broader support for public education. His second book, Do What Works, was published in December 2004 and received numerous positive reviews.