William McGurn has two main careers today: as Vice President for News Corporation, where he writes speeches for CEO Rupert Murdoch; and as a writer for The Wall Street Journal, where his column "Main Street" appears each Tuesday.
Prior to rejoining the Journal in 2008, Bill served in the West Wing as chief speechwriter for most of President George W. Bush's second term. As chief speechwriter in a wartime White House, he wrote or supervised hundreds of the President's speeches, including televised national addresses from the Oval Office that announced the surge in Iraq. In every area of public policy, Bill helped the President bring his policy agenda to the American people. That experience, at the highest levels of national service, gave Bill practical insights to the workings of government and the formation of policy enjoyed by a rare few in the news business.
Most of Bill's career has been as a newspaperman. Having started out as an assistant managing editor at the American Spectator in Bloomington, Ind., he would shortly move overseas -- to Brussels for The Wall Street Journal/Europe (where he interviewed Lech Walesa four years before the Berlin Wall came down), and then to Hong Kong for The Asian Wall Street Journal (where he traveled to Afghanistan during the first war). He returned to America as Washington Bureau Chief for Bill Buckley's National Review before leaving again for what would be a six-year stint as editorial page editor for the Far Eastern Economic Review. During that second time in Hong Kong, he witnessed the lowering of the Union Jack as the British Crown Colony was returned to China.
Bill holds a BA in philosophy from Notre Dame and an MS in Communications from Boston University. He is author of a book on Hong Kong ("Perfidious Albion") and a monograph on terrorism ("Terrorist or Freedom Fighter"). He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a trustee for Ave Maria University, and until recently served on the board of Notre Dame's Center for Ethics and Culture. He writes and lectures frequently.
Bill lives with his wife, Julie, in New Jersey with their three daughters, all adopted from China: Grace, Maisie, and Lucy.
Research and Writing
"A Peddler's Words," in Why I Am Still a Catholic, Kevin Ryan and Marilyn Ryan, editors. Riverhead Books, Indiana University, 1998.
Perfidious Albion: The Abandonment of Hong Kong. Ethics and Public Policy Center, Washington, DC, 1992.
Basic Law, Basic Questions: The 1997 Debate Continues (editor). Review Publishing Company, Hong Kong, 1988.
Terrorist or Freedom Fighter: The Cost of Confusion. Alliance Publishers for the Institute for European Defence & Strategic Studies, London, 1987.
One of the great tragedies of American life is that so many of the business leaders who can tell you why free markets are more efficient than the alternatives are at a loss to explain why it is also more moral.– Bill McGurn
In His Words ...
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