Donald L. Evans
Evans is a Texas oilman who has seen both boom and bust. Since November, he's clearly been enjoying a boom, but the Senate power shift may send things downward for him. Evans, however, has great resources to draw upon. He is one of Bush's earliest Texas friends, and one of his most trusted advisers. As governor, Bush appointed Evans to the Board of Regents of the University of Texas system. And as the chief fundraiser for Bush's presidential campaign, Evans raised more than $120 million. Also, Democrats back his use of the Commerce Department to promote economic growth, and he won easy confirmation in the Senate. Evans is clearly good at making friends; he won warm praise from Al Gore's campaign manager, William Daley, even before his Senate confirmation. Evans's job puts him at the nexus of politics and business. Daley said, "There's nothing wrong with mixing the two," adding that Evans will go out of his way to avoid improprieties "because he is an honorable man and has to protect the President." Evans, 54, can also tap his years of top management experience. He'll need it to direct the many missions of the department, including promoting exports, developing technology, overseeing patents, and supporting small and minority-owned businesses. Evans was born in Houston and received a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering and an MBA, both from the University of Texas. He then moved to the Texas oilfields, quickly rising by age 33 to head Tom Brown Inc., an energy firm whose fortunes have tracked the boom-and-bust oil economy over the past 20 years. Evans was chairman and CEO when Bush tapped him for the Cabinet.
Samuel W. Bodman
Deputy Secretary (designate)
Bodman-like his immediate boss, Commerce Secretary Evans-is an oilman in an oil-rich Administration. Thanks to his career path, however, Bodman has spent most of the past three decades in the Northeast. Until his appointment at Commerce, Bodman, 62, was chairman and chief executive officer of Boston-based Cabot Corp., a $1.5 billion, publicly traded chemical company that is the world's biggest producer of the industrial pigment known as carbon black. It was during this time that he got to know Evans and other oil executives. Before his 14-year stint at Cabot, Bodman spent 16 years at Fidelity Investments, eventually serving as president of the mutual fund giant's parent company, FMR Corp. Upon his appointment, Bodman-once an informal adviser to former Gov. William Weld, R-Mass.-told The Boston Globe that he has maintained a "good relationship" with Evans over the years. Bodman, who was born in Chicago, earned his bachelor's degree from Cornell University and his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Bodman has no specific statutory duties; the deputy secretary often handles tasks delegated by the Secretary.
NEXT STORY: The Earlybird: Today's headlines