Michael W. Kirst is Professor Emeritus of Education and Business Administration at Stanford University. Kirst served as President of the California State Board of Education from 2011 through 2019. Previously, he was a member of the California State Board of Education (1975–1982) and its president from 1977 to 1981. A prolific writer, Kirst has authored ten books, including The Political Dynamics of American Education (2009) and Higher Education and Silicon Valley: Connected but Conflicted (2017). As a policy generalist, Kirst has published articles on school finance politics, curriculum politics, intergovernmental relations, as well as education reform policies.
Kirst received his bachelor’s degree in Economics from Dartmouth College, his M.P.A. in Government and Economics from Harvard University, and his Ph.D. in Political Economy and Government from Harvard.