The Nation’s Largest African American Video Oral History Collection Mobile search icon Mobile close search icon
Advanced Biography Search
Mobile navigation icon Close mobile navigation icon

Edwin Dorn

Presidential appointee and public policy professor Edwin Dorn was born on March 26, 1945 in Crockett, Texas to parents Edgar and Mary Dorn. Dorn attended Jack Yates High School in Houston, Texas, and in 1967, graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Texas at Austin. He studied in England on a Fulbright Fellowship, received his M.A. degree from Indiana University, and completed his Ph.D. degree in political science at Yale University in 1978. He also spent two years on active duty as a captain in the U.S. Army, stationed in Germany.

From 1977 to 1981, Dorn worked in Washington, D.C. as a political appointee in the U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare and in the U.S. Department of Education. He then served as a senior researcher at the Joint Center for Political Studies, and later as a senior staff member at the Brookings Institution.

In 1993, President William J. Clinton nominated, and the U.S. Senate confirmed Dorn for the senior Department of Defense position of Assistant Secretary of Defense for Personnel. A year later, he was nominated and confirmed as the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness. From 1997 to 2005, Dorn served as dean of the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin, where he oversaw the creation of several new programs and set a record for fund-raising. He continues to teach at the University of Texas as a professor of public policy.

Dorn’s major publications include Rules and Racial Equality (Yale University Press) and Who Defends America (Joint Center Press). He also is the author of dozens of articles, reports, and opinion pieces. He was an advisor to two public television series: Congress: We The People, and Eyes on the Prize: America’s Civil Rights Years, and a commentator on National Public Radio’s “Tell Me More,” hosted by Michel Martin.

Dorn serves as a trustee of the Kettering Foundation, the Institute for Defense Analyses, and the Seton Family of Hospitals. In 1998, he was named a Distinguished Alumnus of the University of Texas at Austin.

Edwin Dorn was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on February 2, 2013.

Accession Number

A2013.021

Sex

Male

Interview Date

2/2/2013 |and| 5/9/2014

Last Name

Dorn

Marital Status

Married

Schools

Yale University

Indiana University

University of Texas at Arlington

First Name

Edwin

Birth City, State, Country

Crockett

HM ID

DOR07

Favorite Season

Spring

State

Texas

Favorite Vacation Destination

San Francisco, California, Petra, Jordan

Favorite Quote

The Arc Of The Moral Universe Is Long, But It Bends Toward Justice. - Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Texas

Birth Date

3/26/1945

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Austin

Country

United States

Favorite Food

Fried Chicken, Salmon

Short Description

Presidential appointee and public policy professor Edwin Dorn (1945 - ) was the former Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness under President William J. Clinton, and the Dean of the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin.

Employment

University of Texas, Austin

Department of Defense

Brookings Institution

Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies

United States Department of Education

Delete

Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare

United States Army

Center for West African Studies

Favorite Color

Blue