John B. Williams is a fellow at the Baker Institute who oversees the institute’s Presidential Elections Program. A national award-winning journalist and speechwriter, Williams has been a policy assistant to the Honorable James A. Baker, III, since July 2004. In that role, he has supported Secretary Baker’s efforts to find solutions for a wide array of international and domestic challenges, including the Iraq Study Group, the Commission on Federal Election Reform, the National War Powers Commission and the BP U.S. Refineries Independent Safety Review Panel. He also prepares speeches, op-eds and other written materials for Secretary Baker and is an employee of Baker Botts L.L.P.
Williams had a long career reporting on governmental and political issues, serving as a political columnist and reporter in his prior job with the Houston Chronicle, where his focus was on state and local news. He received a 1987 Penney-Missouri Journalism Award for a series of articles about a Mississippi investment banking firm that took advantage of small investors and a 2012 Cicero Speechwriting Award for “The Life and Legacy of Ronald Wilson Reagan.” A fourth generation Texan, Williams was born and raised in Austin, where he graduated from The University of Texas with bachelor’s degrees in zoology and journalism.