Bill Honig, the much-admired state education leader disgraced in a contract scandal in the 1990s, won’t serve on the state’s Board of Education again after all.

Gov. Jerry Brown nominated Honig to the board last week—a move that excited both praise and criticism. The criticism arose from Honig’s 1993 conviction in a conflict-of-interest case involving state funds paid to his wife, an education consultant. Honig was originally found guilty of a felony and performed 1,000 hours of community service before the trial judge reduced the offenses to misdemeanors and cut former official’s sentence.

As recently as a Friday afternoon interview with KQED News,, Honig enthusiastically discussed serving again on the board. But today, the governor’s office announced Honig had withdrawn his name for consideration. The Los Angeles Times reports:

Honig said there were “some complications” with his nomination, but he refused to elaborate. “I’m not going to comment on what they were,” he said. Honig currently works as the president of CORE, which offers professional development services for teachers and education administrators.

Brown spokeswoman Elizabeth Ashford did not offer an explanation for Honig’s decision, but said “the governor has encouraged him to stay involved with state education policy.” Honig said he planned to be an informal adviser to the governor on education issues and praised Brown’s board of education picks. “I think they have a very strong board,” Honig said.


Dan Brekke

Dan Brekke is a blogger, reporter and editor for KQED News, responsible for online breaking news coverage of topics ranging from California water issues to the Bay Area's transportation challenges. In a newsroom career that began in Chicago in 1972, Dan has worked as a city and foreign/national editor for The San Francisco Examiner, editor at Wired News, deputy editor at Wired magazine, managing editor at TechTV as well as for several Web startups.

Since joining KQED in 2007, Dan has reported, edited and produced both radio and online features and breaking news pieces. He has shared in two Society of Professional Journalists Norcal Excellence in Journalism awards — for his 2012 reporting on a KQED Science series on water and power in California, and in 2014, for KQED's comprehensive reporting on the south Napa earthquake.

In addition to his 44 years of on-the-job education, Dan is a lifelong student of history and is still pursuing an undergraduate degree.

Email Dan at:


Sponsored by

Become a KQED sponsor