THURSDAY, JANUARY 16, 2014, 7:00PM
Bush earned a bachelor’s degree in Latin American Affairs from the University of Texas at Austin and moved to Florida in 1981. With partner Amando Codina, he started a small real estate development company, which grew to become the largest, full-service commercial real estate company in South Florida.
Bush served as Florida’s secretary of commerce under Bob Martinez, Florida’s 40th governor. As secretary of commerce, he promoted Florida’s business climate worldwide. Following an unsuccessful bid for Governor in 1994, Bush founded the non-profit Foundation for Florida’s Future, which joined forces with the Greater Miami Urban League to establish one of the state’s first charter schools. He also co-authored Profiles in Character, a book profiling 14 of Florida’s civic heroes-people making a difference without claiming a single news headline.
After his election, Bush focused on reforming education. Florida students have made the greatest gains in achievement and Florida is one of a handful of states that have narrowed the achievement gap. In addition, Bush cut taxes every year during his tenure as Governor and Florida led the nation in job growth. Bush put Florida on the forefront of consumer healthcare advances by signing Medicaid reform legislation, “Empowered Care,” in June 2006.
Bush is currently the head of his own successful consulting business, Jeb Bush and Associates, where his clients range from small technology start-ups to well-known Fortune 500 companies. He is also the chairman of Foundation for Excellence in Education, a national foundation focused on education reform, co-chairman of the Barbara Bush Family Literacy Foundation and chair of the National Constitution Center. He is co-author of Immigration Wars: Forging an American Solution.
Bush is the son of former President George H.W. Bush and Barbara Bush. He lives in Miami with his wife Columba, and they have three children.
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