Arkansans elected Bill Halter in 2006 as their fourteenth lieutenant governor with 57 percent of the vote. In addition to his duties as the state's second-ranking constitutional officer who served as acting governor when the governor was away from the state, Halter successfully led the campaign to establish a scholarship lottery in Arkansas with all proceeds dedicated to scholarships for state citizens to attend Arkansas colleges and universities. Arkansas voters approved the constitutional amendment authored by Halter by an almost 2-to-1 vote. The lottery has already delivered over 300 million dollars in net proceeds providing nearly 100,000 scholarships to help Arkansas's students achieve a higher education.
Nationally, Halter was elected by his colleagues to chair the Democratic Lieutenant Governors Association and he chaired the Southern Region of the bipartisan National Lieutenant Governors Association.
Bill Halter brings extensive experience in both the public and private sectors to his campaign for Governor. He has served as an economic adviser to the President of the United States and to the U.S. Senate, led the Social Security Administration, advised Fortune 500 companies, and served on the Boards of Directors of ten information technology, life sciences, and biofuels companies.
Bill Halter’s lifelong advocacy of educational opportunity is demonstrated by his service as Trustee Emeritus of Stanford University, his alma mater. He also has served on Stanford’s Humanities and Sciences Council and continues to serve on the Advisory Council for Stanford University Libraries. He is a past member of the National Advisory Board of Friends for Youth, which matches at-risk youngsters with adult mentors.
In the public sector, President Bill Clinton appointed (and the U.S. Senate unanimously confirmed) Bill Halter as Deputy Commissioner of Social Security in 1999. As the agency’s Chief Operating Officer, he was responsible for the delivery of more than $500 billion in benefits to 48 million-plus Americans, including nearly 540,000 Arkansans. He later served as Acting Commissioner of Social Security, managing 65,000 employees in 1,500 offices.
Bill Halter first joined the Clinton administration in 1993, working to help trim bureaucratic waste with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) in the Executive Office of the President. During his six years at OMB, the government’s $290 billion budget deficit was transformed into a $125 billion surplus. The United States enjoyed its first balanced budget in 40 years.
Previously, Bill Halter served the U.S. Congress as an economist for the Joint Economic Committee and as Chief Economist for the Senate Finance Committee.
Bill Halter is a Rhodes Scholar, receiving an M.Phil. degree in economics from Oxford University in England in 1986. He studied economics and political science as a National Merit Scholar and Harry S. Truman Scholar at Stanford University where he earned an A.B. degree with honors and distinction and graduated as a member of Phi Beta Kappa in 1983.
Raised in North Little Rock, Bill Halter was valedictorian of the Little Rock Catholic High School graduating class of 1979. He is a fourth-generation Arkansan. His father ran a small business; his mother was a nurse.
Bill and Shanti Halter live in North Little Rock with their two beautiful daughters: Lauren Renee and Julia Nancy. The Halters are members of Immaculate Conception Catholic Church.