Our Board


Jonathan Butcher

Jonathan Butcher serves as Education Director for the Goldwater Institute. He has researched education policy and school choice programs around the U.S. His work has appeared in journals such as Education Next and the Georgetown Journal of Law and Public Policy, and he has appeared on local and national TV outlets, including interviews on Fox News. He has also been a guest on many radio programs, and his commentary has appeared nationally in places such as RealClearPolicy.com, National Journal, and Townhall.com, along with newspapers around the country.

Jonathan is a member of the Arizona Department of Education’s Steering Committee for Empowerment Scholarship Accounts, the nation’s first education savings account program. He is also a Senior Fellow with The Beacon Center of Tennessee, a nonpartisan research organization.

Prior to joining Goldwater, Jonathan was the Director of Accountability for the South Carolina Public Charter School District, South Carolina’s only statewide charter school authorizer. Jonathan previously studied education policy at the Department of Education Reform at the University of Arkansas and worked with the School Choice Demonstration Project, the research team that evaluated voucher programs in Washington, D.C. and Milwaukee, Wisc.

Jonathan studied education and family policy at The Heritage Foundation, a research institute in Washington, D.C. He holds a B.A. in English from Furman University and an M.A. in economics from the University of Arkansas.


Zack Dawes

Zack Dawes is Senior Advisor and National Director of Development for the American Federation for Children and Alliance for School Choice, a national organization advocating for school choice.

A Texas native with 20 years of experience in state and national policy, Zack’s experience includes a public affairs consulting firm providing business and governmental affairs consulting services to related clients including Connections Education, a national leader in K through12 virtual education. In the past three decades, he has managed high-level political campaigns, served as a partner at an Austin-based communications firm, and worked at the state’s largest public relations firm.   In 1998, Dawes was asked to serve as Senior Vice-President of Children First America, a charitable and educational foundation which provided privately funded K-12 scholarships to low income families. Zack had previously helped launch the Foundation’s Austin affiliate program, as well as similar programs in other states.

Zack Dawes is a graduate of Baylor University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1979 with a major in history. Dawes declined an opportunity to attend law school, opting instead to become part of a family owned general contracting business where he served as Vice-President until 1988, when he transitioned to a career in politics, communications, and public policy.

Zack and his wife, Jana have two sons and a daughter and reside in Austin, TX.


Randy Kendrick