Donald Louis Evans

Don Evans

B.S. M.E., 1969
Chairman, Energy Future Holdings; Midland, Texas

Mr. Evans was the 34th Secretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce, the voice of business in government.  Evans was a core member of President Bush’s economic team, advising the President on many issues including pro-growth and job-creating economic policies, international trade, business concerns, and energy policy.

Evans oversaw a diverse cabinet agency with some 40,000 workers and a $5.8 billion budget focused on promoting American business, both at home and abroad. The Commerce Department gathers vast quantities of economic and demographic data, issues patents and trademarks, helps set technical standards, forecasts the weather, conducts oceans and coastal zone research, manages marine fisheries and sanctuaries, enforces international trade laws, and develops telecommunications and technology policy.

Born in Houston, Texas, in 1946, Evans attended The University of Texas at Austin, receiving a B.S. degree in mechanical engineering in 1969 and an M.B.A. in 1973. During school breaks, he worked in a Texas steel mill. In 1975, Evans moved to Midland, Texas from Houston and began his career as a “roughneck” working on oil rigs for Tom Brown, Inc., a large independent energy company. Ten years later, he took the helm of the company as CEO, continuing in that position until being tapped by the President to lead the Commerce Department.

Evans previously served as CEO of the Financial Services Forum, an economic policy association comprised of the CEOs of 20 of the largest and most diversified financial services institutions doing business in the United States. The Forum is working to educate the public about the importance of robust capital markets; influence the national and international regulatory debate; and promote a competitive global marketplace and the free flow of capital. Evans resigned his post as CEO of Financial Services Forum at the end of 2007 in order to take on his current role as Chairman of Energy Future Holdings, formerly known as TXU Corporation.  Evans also serves as Chairman of the George W. Bush Presidential Center which is to be built at Southern Methodist University in Dallas.  In addition, Evans is a senior partner with Quintana Energy Partners out of Houston. 

Evans is a self-described optimist who believes the highest calling in life is serving others. As a result, he has been very active in community service over the years. In 1995, Governor Bush appointed him to the Board of Regents of the University of Texas; he was elected chairman of the board in February 1997 and served two consecutive terms. Evans was a board member of the Scleroderma Research Foundation for eight years and was a driving force behind Native Vision, a program that provides services to about 10,000 Native American children. He was involved with the United Way for many years, serving as president of the Midland branch in 1989 and campaign chair in 1981.

In December 2001, the University of South Carolina awarded Evans an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree. In September 2002, the University of Texas honored Evans with its Distinguished Alumnus Award. In November 2002, he was inducted into the University of Texas Red McCombs School of Business Hall of Fame. Evans has made significant contributions in local and national politics over the past 25 years, having worked on behalf of Governor Bush’s successful gubernatorial campaigns in 1994 and 1998 and serving as chairman of the Bush/Cheney 2000 campaign.

Evans says his passions in life are his family and friends. He is married to Susan Marinis Evans. They have two daughters, a son and three grandchildren.

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