Top Contributors to State School Superintendent Candidates in 2017

February 15, 2017

Here are the top contributors since Jan. 1 to the three candidates vying for state school superintendent in next Tuesday’s spring primary. (Top contributors from the previous reporting period can be found here.)

The top two finishers in the primary will move on to the April 4 general election to face off for a four-year term. The incumbent, Tony Evers, was first elected in 2009, and reelected in 2013. Evers faces John Humphries, a former Dodgeville School District administrator, and Lowell Holtz, a former superintendent for the Beloit and Whitnall school districts.

Evers is generally supported by Democrats and Humphries and Holtz are generally backed by Republicans, even though spring elections are officially nonpartisan. Both Holtz and Humphries support the state’s school voucher programs, but Evers believes the voucher programs drain state support from public schools.

Tony Evers

Top Contributions to DPI candidate Tony Evers since Jan. 1

American Federation of Teachers Wisconsin PAC, $18,000

WEAC PAC, $18,000

American Federation of Teachers #212 PAC, $10,000

Herb Kohl, of Milwaukee, retired Democratic U.S. senator, $5,000

John C. Miller, of Kohler, retired chairman of Miller St. Nazianz, $5,000

John W. Miller, of Cedarburg, retired president of Miller St. Nazianz, $3,000


Lowell Holtz

Top Contributions to DPI candidate Lowell Holtz since Jan. 1

Richard Uihlein, of Lake Forest, Ill., owner of Uline Corp., $5,000

Dan Hartung, of Madison, owner of Hartung Brothers Fertilizer, $5,000

Dennis Kuester, of Milwaukee, retired M&I Bank chairman, $5,000

Patrick English, of Wauwatosa, president of Fiduciary Management, $4,000

Terrence Wall, of Madison, owner of T. Wall Properties, $2,500

Paul Schierl , of Green Bay, president of the Cornerstone Foundation of NE Wisconsin, $2,500

Eric Hovde, of Madison, owner of Hovde Financial, $2,000

Donald Utschig, of Appleton, retired owner of Limelite Premium Fusion Beverage, $2,000

1 st Congressional District Republican Party, $2,000


John Humphries

Top Contributions to DPI candidate John Humphries since Jan. 1

Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce, $10,000

Michael Mahoney, of Mequon, Park Bank chairman, $1,000

Kathryn Burke, of Milwaukee, owner of Burke Properties, $1,000

Lisa Mauer, of Wauwatosa, owner of Blackhawk Tool Service, $1,000

Grace Gunnlaugsson, of Chenequa, retired, $1,000

Ted Kellner, of Milwaukee, chairman of Fiduciary Management, $1,000

Betty Jo Nelson, of Oconomowoc, retired GOP legislator, $1,000

La Vonne Zietlow, of Onalaska, owner of Kwik Trip, $1,000

The employer information for these large donors was added by the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign because new campaign finance laws effective last year no longer require candidates to make that contributor information available to the public. Previous state law required candidates to identify the employers and occupations of individuals who contributed more than $100 annually. Now, candidates only have to identify a large contributor’s occupation, which usually amounts to meaningless references, such as owner, president, or executive.

To view how much the candidates have raised and spent, as well as the candidates’ top contributors for the entire election cycle, please visit the Campaign 2017 feature on the Democracy Campaign’s website or you can go here for top contributors from the previous reporting period.