Kyl was paid $75k a year for lectures, advisory work & co-teaching a single seminar




Jon Kyl speaking at an event hosted by the ASU School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership titled "Leadership and Politics in America After the 2016 Election" in March 2017. Kyl spoke as part of his employment at ASU, for which he was paid $75,000 annually, largely to be a guest lecturer. Photo by Gage Skidmore | Flickr

Arizona State University has explained, at least partially, what former U.S. Sen. Jon Kyl has done for the school since 2013 to earn a hefty paycheck.

Mostly, he has been a guest lecturer and advisor, and he has helped attract other high-profile speakers for ASU.

“Since beginning his work at ASU, Senator Kyl has supported work across multiple schools, institutes and initiatives, providing dozens of guest lectures, public talks and advising on policy issues facing the state, nation and the world in which the university is engaged on developing solutions,” said ASU spokeswoman Katie Paquet.

ASU provided a list of Kyl’s work, which includes:

  • Doing guest lectures for the Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions
  • Informally advising Paul Carrese, the director of the Koch-funded School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership
  • Doing “a series of guest lectures” for the School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership
  • Organized a “major speaker event” for the School of Civic and Economic Thought and Leadership featuring former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle to discuss partisan politics
  • Participating in “numerous events” for the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, including a panel discussion about the judicial nomination process and moderating a session with former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton, who currently serves as National Security Advisor to President Trump.
  • Having a series of “coffee chats” with honors students
  • Advising the Center for Political Thought and Leadership and helping it secure guest speakers
  • Giving a 2014 keynote address to Pi Sigma Alpha, ASU’s political science honor society
  • Representing ASU in guest lectures at King’s College London

Kyl also “co-taught a seminar” for law school students on tax policy, but Paquet did not provide any information about it, including the year or the class number. The Mirror has asked ASU for that information, but the university has not yet provided it.

And in 2014, when ASU launched the Kyl Center for Water Policy at its Morrison Institute for Public Policy, the former senator became a “key advisor” to the program.

Kyl was paid $75,000 a year for his work at the university.

In the offer letter that ASU President Michael Crow sent Kyl in March 2013, which the Mirror obtained through a public records request, Kyl agreed to do part-time work that equates to about 8 hours per week.

Because he had recently taken a job at Covington & Burling, a high-powered D.C. lobbying firm, and was serving as a visiting fellow for the conservative, Koch-funded think tank American Enterprise Institute, Kyl was allowed to be based out of D.C. and be reimbursed for travel related to his ASU work.

The Mirror has asked ASU if Kyl was ever reimbursed for travel and what the cost of doing so was, but the university has not yet provided that information.

Kyl also was permitted to hire a part-time administrative assistant to coordinate his ASU work.

The Mirror has asked ASU if Kyl actually hired an employee and what the cost of doing so was, but the university has not yet provided that information.

Although Kyl listed the purpose of his ASU salary as teaching both undergraduate and law school classes on his federal financial disclosure form, he told the Arizona Republic that he does “a lot of things at ASU that aren’t strictly teaching.”

Jim Small
Jim Small is a native Arizonan and has covered state government, policy and politics since 2004, with a focus on investigative and in-depth policy reporting, first as a reporter for the Arizona Capitol Times, then as editor of the paper and its prestigious sister publications, the Yellow Sheet Report and Arizona Legislative Report. Under his guidance, the Capitol Times won numerous state, regional and national awards for its accountability journalism and probing investigations into state government operations.

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