Pence’s Donor Has Ties to Kochs and Edison Schools

by Doug Martin at Hoosier School Heist

As Indy Star’s Tony Cook first reported a few days ago, one of Mike Pence’s newest funders is Republican donor John W. Childs, a chief official in the Club for Growth, a pro-business organization loosely aligned with the Koch Network.

In 2011, Childs was honored at a Koch Brothers’ retreat for giving at least $1 million to Koch causes.

A private equity firm CEO and Mitch Daniels supporter, Childs was an early investor in Edison Schools, now named Edison Learning.

Edison Learning has operated Gary’s Roosevelt Career and Technical Center every since former Indiana supt. of public schools Tony Bennett turned the public school over to the for-profit operator.

A major investor in Edison, Childs was a board member in the 90s alongside Democrat Reverend Floyd Flake–a main character in my book Hoosier School Heist–but it is unknown if Childs still has a financial interest in Edison.

Back in 1998, when Edison was taking off, Childs donated at least $100,000 to the Republican National State Elections Committee, according to Indiana campaign finance records.

John W. Childs was recently named by Business Insider as one of Wall Street’s top 16 political donors.

Whereas Childs gave Mike Pence just $50,000 for his reelection campaign, the Center for Responsive Politics finds that the private equity leader funneled over $4 million to outside funding groups in 2012 alone, with $1.1 million going to the Club for Growth, which proves what I have been saying for years—the Koch Brothers are only two of many people we have to be worried about in Indiana, and my book names many, many more.


Doug Martin is the author of Hoosier School Heist : How Corporations and Theocrats Stole Democracy From Public Education, a book being read in over 130 cities and towns and 78 Indiana counties, 23 states, and the District of Columbia.  A regular guest on national and Indiana radio talk shows such as Justin Oakley’s Just Let Me Teach and Amos Brown’s Afternoons with Amos, Dr. Martin’s research has been or will soon be featured in the Washington Post Answer Sheet , ABC’s Nightline, and the Associated Press