AUSTIN, Texas (AP) -- Tea party activist and former Railroad Commission Chairman Michael Williams has been named Texas' top education official.
Gov. Rick Perry tapped Williams on Monday to succeed Robert Scott, who stepped down in July after 5 years heading the Texas Educational Agency. Scott had made headlines after suggesting that the state's standardized testing requirements had become a "perversion" of their original intent.
Williams served as Assistant Secretary of Education for Civil Rights under President George H.W. Bush.
He was appointed to the Railroad Commission in 1998 and subsequently elected three times. But he left his post last year, considered running for U.S. Senate and instead became one of 10 Republicans vying for the GOP nomination in the 25th Congressional District.
Williams was defeated in the May 29 primary.