About Charles T. Munger Jr.
Chairman of Spirit of Democracy

CHARLES T MUNGER JR. is an experimental physicist with a Ph.D. in atomic physics from the University of California at Berkeley, where he graduated in 1987.

His career has ranged from high-energy particle physics to the use of atomic systems to test fundamental symmetry principles. Working with two colleagues, he developed the technique for constructing the first atoms made entirely of anti-matter. His work for the last nine years has centered on developing an experiment to detect the electric dipole moment of the electron, as a probe of CP-violation that might occur outside the Standard Model of particle physics.

Between 2003 and 2007, Charles served on the Curriculum Development and Materials Commission for the State Board of Education.

His service included chairing the Mathematics Subject Matter Committee and the Science Subject Matter Committee, which oversaw the public process for adopting math and science standards and all texts in those subjects for California’s public school students in grades from kindergarten to 9th grade. He was the commission liaison to the Education and Environment Initiative, working to ensure the accuracy of the science taught in the state’s first curriculum in environmental education. He has personally checked the accuracy of thousands of test questions for California’s assessments in science, and reviewed thousands of pages of instructional materials, all to accomplish California’s goal of enabling the highest achievement by each student.

Charles is active in Republican politics, and served as chairman of the Santa Clara County Republican Party from 2012 to 2015. He also served from 2013 to 2019 as chairman of the Initiatives Committee of the state Republican Party, which recommends to party delegates positions the state party should take on statewide ballot initiatives. 

He was the lead supporter of Proposition 11, which in 2008 took the decennial drawing of districts for the state Assembly and Senate away from the state legislature and transferred it to the new and independent Citizens Redistricting Commission and an open, public process. He was also the co-author, proponent, lead supporter and campaign supervisor for Proposition 20, which in 2010 passed with 61.3% of the vote and ensured that the Commission would also draw California’s 53 Congressional districts. He supported the passage of these reforms and the defeat in 2010 of Proposition 27, an initiative that would have abolished the Commission before it had even started work.

In 2015 he organized an amicus brief filed was successful in the defense of congressional redistricting reform in a case brought before the U.S. Supreme Court. As chairman of Hold Politicians Accountable from 2014 to 2019 Charles oversees the legal defense of all challenges in California both to redistricting reform and to the states “top two” primary system, whose passage in 2010 he supported. In 2019 he published through the Schwarzenegger Institute at USC a series of three papers analyzing in detail how the ``top two'' affected election outcomes in the California elections of 2012-2016. In 2016 Charles was co-proponent with former State Senator Sam Blakeslee, and lead supporter, of the California Legislature Transparency Act, which in 2016 passed with 64.5% of the vote as California Proposition 54. This measure requires bills to be posted on the Internet in their final form for 72 hours before they could pass out of either house of the state Legislature, and requires all public proceedings of the state Legislature to be audiovisual recorded and posted on the Internet within 24 hours.

Charles was awarded the National Civic Leadership Award from Common Cause in 2012, and the Distinguished Citizen Award from the Commonwealth Club of San Francisco in 2016, for his successful efforts to end the gerrymandering of California’s legislative districts.

Charles is a member of the Board of Directors of the Lincoln Club of Northern California, and was a member of the Board of Overseers of the Hoover Institution at Stanford University from 2013 to 2017.

Charles and his wife, Mandy Lowell, reside in Palo Alto, California. They have three children.

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