"Teaching is the only job I have ever had that can compare to being governor of a great state."
Thomas Howard Kean (1935– )
Teachers College 1963
Teachers College Trustee 1990–98
A two-term governor of New Jersey noted for his leadership on education policy, Thomas Kean returned to public prominence in late 2002 as chairman of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks in the United States. For the next 18 months he was widely praised for helping to minimize partisanship on the panel that scrutinized the nation's preparedness following September 11, 2001. A moderate Republican with ten years' experience in the state assembly, Kean was elected governor in 1981 by fewer than 1,800 votes, but four years later won reelection by a historic margin. Beyond his education reforms Kean was lauded for efforts to protect the environment, cut taxes, and improve New Jersey's welfare system; in 1986 Newsweek called him one of the nation's most effective governors. Upon leaving office in 1990 Kean became president of Drew University in Madison, New .Jersey, a position he still holds. A 1988 memoir, The Politics of Inclusion, looks back on his political career.