California
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BIOGRAPHY
Alan Bonsteel, M.D., San Francisco

Alan Bonsteel, M.D., San Francisco

ALAN BONSTEEL was the campaign director for one of the earliest efforts to put educational choice before the voters of the United States: the Coons-Sugarman initiative of 1980-1981. He has studied systems of educational choice in twelve countries and is California's top expert on comparative educational choice overseas.

He was Campaign Vice Chairman of Parents for Educational Choice during the Prop. 174 battle for school choice in 1993 and was that campaign's most widely published author, reaching about 12 million readers through the editorial pages of California's newspapers.After Wilbert Smith, he was the campaign's second most active speaker in English, of course, but also in fluent Spanish: he debated the issue about 30 times on Spanish-language radio and TV programs.

To develop his skills as a public speaker, he went to New York three months before the election to take instruction from Roger Ailes, the media guru who had become famous for his coaching of Ronald Reagan. He also received instruction from Communispond, a San Francisco firm that provides media training.

Since the election, Alan has continued to publish voluminously in California's newspapers and has again reached about 12 million readers through his op-eds and letters to the editor. His efforts to expose the systematic, gross underreporting of California's school dropout rates reached fruition in 1999, when the California Department of Education was finally forced to admit its deceptive practices and promise to tell the truth in the future.

Hisfirstbook, AChoice forOur ChildrenCuring the Crisis in America's Schools, was written in collaboration with his friend and colleague Carlos Bonilla, M.D., and was published in 1997 by the Institute for Contemporary Studies. A second edition is planned.

A physician in his professional life, Alan divides his time between family practice and urgent care medicine, and serves several hospitals throughout the state on a rotating basis. He is a graduate of Dartmouth Medical School and completed an internship at the University of California at Davis School of Medicine and a residency in family practice at the McGill School of Medicine in Montreal. He is the author of a book on health care, Stay Young, Start Now, published in 2000 by Celestial Arts.

Alan was born in 1951 in Los Angeles and now lives in San Francisco with his wife, Chantal Charbonnean. In his spare time he plays ice hockey.

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