Almanac A members-only database of searchable profiles compiled and adapted from the Almanac of American Politics

Biography

Elected: 2012, 1st term.

Born: September 13, 1949, Evanston, IL

Home: Austin

Education: TX Christian U., B.S. 1971

Professional Career: Owner, Roger Williams Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram, 1971-present; TX sec. of st., 2005-07; Baseball coach, TX Christian U., 1974-76; Atlanta Braves farm team, 1971-74

Ethnicity: White/Caucasian

Religion: Christian

Family: Married (Patty Williams) , 2 children

After dropping a bid for the U.S. Senate, Republican Roger Williams, a former Texas secretary of state and prolific fundraiser, easily rose above 11 candidates in the GOP primary in 2012 to clinch his party’s nomination in the 25th District of Texas, which was made reliably Republican through redistricting. His primary win all but guaranteed him victory in the general election.

Williams grew up in Fort Worth, where his father was a Chevrolet dealer and his mother ran a needlepoint business. He attended Texas Christian University on a baseball scholarship. After graduating in 1971, he played with the Atlanta Braves farm team for four years until he injured a shoulder while sliding into first base. He returned home to run the family car dealership and to TCU, where he coached baseball for three years. “I always thought I’d be a Major League Baseball player,” he said in an interview with National Journal. “When you’re young, you never think you’re going to get hurt or get old.” Baseball is still important to Williams; he checks box scores every morning during the season and considers pitching legend Nolan Ryan a good friend.

It was a shared love for baseball that connected Williams and George W. Bush. A former owner of the Texas Rangers, Bush invited Williams to be a state finance chairman for his 1994 and 1998 campaigns for governor, which was Williams’ first foray into politics. He made his way to Washington in 2000, when President Bush appointed him to the Republican National Committee’s Eagles program. He left that position to accept Gov. Rick Perry’s appointment as secretary of state. He was also Perry’s chief liaison to Mexico.

Williams, who was Sen. John Cornyn’s finance chair in 2002, said that political fundraising comes easily to him. By 2008, Williams was interested in running for the Senate seat held by Republican Kay Bailey Hutchison, who lost a 2010 primary race for governor to Perry. But Williams announced in June 2011 that he would instead run for the 25th District seat, which, after a court battle, was altered to stretch from the state capital in Austin to the Fort Worth area. The GOP-engineered changes prompted Democratic Rep. Lloyd Doggett to move to the 35th District. Williams overwhelmingly outraised the rest of the GOP primary field and beat tea party activist Wes Riddle in a runoff, 58% to 42%.

Williams ran on what he called a “pretty simple” platform. “It’s lower taxes, less government, cut the spending, defend the borders, listen to your generals, and understand the 10th Amendment,” he said. He generated controversy when he called President Barack Obama a socialist at a campaign event, but said he saw no reason to apologize. “Here’s a man that wants to own the banks, the car manufacturers, the student loan programs,” he said. “It’s basically socialism versus entrepreneurialism and capitalism. That’s what we’re fighting.”

Office Contact Information

MAIN OFFICE

(202) 225-9896

(202) 225-9692

LHOB- Longworth House Office Building Room 1323
Washington, DC 20515-4325

MAIN OFFICE

(202) 225-9896

(202) 225-9692

LHOB- Longworth House Office Building Room 1323
Washington, DC 20515-4325

DISTRICT OFFICE

(512) 473-8910

(512) 473-8946

1005 Congress Avenue Suite 925
Austin, TX 78701

DISTRICT OFFICE

(512) 473-8910

(512) 473-8946

1005 Congress Avenue Suite 150
Austin, TX 78701

DISTRICT OFFICE

(817) 774-2575

(817) 774-2576

1 Walnut Street Suite 145
Cleburne, TX 76033

DISTRICT OFFICE

(817) 774-2575

(817) 774-2576

1 Walnut Street Suite 145
Cleburne, TX 76033

CAMPAIGN OFFICE

(888) 797-6437

PO Box 91061
Austin, TX 78709-1061

CAMPAIGN OFFICE

PO Box 91061
Austin, TX 78709-1061

Staff

Sort by: Interest Name Title

Abortion

Nicole Lansford
Legislative Correspondent; Legislative Assistant

Aerospace

Sean Dillon
Legislative Director

Agriculture

Nicole Lansford
Legislative Correspondent; Legislative Assistant

Animal Rights

Nicole Lansford
Legislative Correspondent; Legislative Assistant

Appropriations

Sean Dillon
Legislative Director

Arts

Nicole Lansford
Legislative Correspondent; Legislative Assistant

Commerce

Sean Dillon
Legislative Director

Education

Sean Dillon
Legislative Director

Nicole Lansford
Legislative Correspondent; Legislative Assistant

Energy

Sean Dillon
Legislative Director

Environment

Nicole Lansford
Legislative Correspondent; Legislative Assistant

Finance

Sean Dillon
Legislative Director

Foreign

J. Spencer Freebairn
Deputy Chief of Staff

Health

Sean Dillon
Legislative Director

Nicole Lansford
Legislative Correspondent; Legislative Assistant

Intelligence

J. Spencer Freebairn
Deputy Chief of Staff

Labor

Nicole Lansford
Legislative Correspondent; Legislative Assistant

Land Use

Nicole Lansford
Legislative Correspondent; Legislative Assistant

Military

J. Spencer Freebairn
Deputy Chief of Staff

Native Americans

Nicole Lansford
Legislative Correspondent; Legislative Assistant

Public Works

J. Spencer Freebairn
Deputy Chief of Staff

Science

Sean Dillon
Legislative Director

Small Business

Sean Dillon
Legislative Director

Telecommunications

Sean Dillon
Legislative Director

Trade

J. Spencer Freebairn
Deputy Chief of Staff

Transportation

J. Spencer Freebairn
Deputy Chief of Staff

Veterans

Nicole Lansford
Legislative Correspondent; Legislative Assistant

Women

Nicole Lansford
Legislative Correspondent; Legislative Assistant

Election Results

2012 GENERAL
Roger Williams
Votes: 154,245
Percent: 58.44%
Elaine Henderson
Votes: 98,827
Percent: 37.44%
2012 RUNOFF
Roger Williams
Votes: 26,495
Percent: 57.97%
Wes Riddle
Votes: 19,210
Percent: 42.03%
2012 PRIMARY
Roger Williams
Votes: 12,894
Percent: 25.11%
Wes Riddle
Votes: 7,481
Percent: 14.57%
Justin Hewlett
Votes: 6,178
Percent: 12.03%
Dave Garrison
Votes: 6,133
Percent: 11.95%
Michael Williams
Votes: 5,392
Percent: 10.5%
Dianne Costa
Votes: 4,810
Percent: 9.37%

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