William Hayward

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William Reed Hayward

(Businessman and political activist)

Born July 17, 1952
Political Party Republican-turned-Democrat
Spouse Lulu Wang Hayward

William Reed Hayward (born July 17, 1952)[1] is a former two-time candidate for the 28th congressional district seat in south Texas. A self-declared conservative, Hayward is a government contractor who has resided since 1996 in San Marcos in Hays County south of the capital city of Austin.

In 2012, he challenged the popular incumbent Democrat Henry Roberto Cuellar (born 1955) of Laredo in Webb County, who has held the seat since 2005. Cuellar is a former member of the Texas House of Representatives and a former Texas Secretary of State, a post he held under appointment of then Governor Rick Perry. Running as a Republican in 2012, Hayward lost to Cuellar in the general election in which Mitt Romney carried the Texas electoral vote but fared poorly in Webb County. Cuellar led with 112,456 votes (67.9 percent) to Hayward's 49,309 (29.8 percent). Two other candidates shared the remaining ballots. Considering the heavily Democratic nature of the 28th district, Hayward switched parties in 2015 to run against Cuellar in the March 1, 2016, primary election. He was defeated by an even greater margin than in 2012. Cuellar then defeated the lone Republican candidate, Zeffen Patrick Hardin (born 1982) of San Antonio in the November 8 general election.[2]

Considered a moderate-to-liberal Democrat, Cuellar at least once crossed party lines when he backed George W. Bush in the 2000 presidential election. He supported Hillary Rodham Clinton in the 2016 presidential election against the successful Republican nominee Donald Trump. Bill Clinton addressed a fundraiser on his wife's behalf at the Cuellar home in Laredo on February 22, 2016. Clinton spoke thereafter at a get-out-the-vote gathering at Texas A&M International University in Laredo.[3]

Born in Michigan, Hayward is of both German and American Indian descent. In 1983, he received a bachelor's degree from DeVry College in Irving in Dallas County, Texas, north of Dallas. He holds a master's from Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona. He served in the United States Air Force from 1974 to 1979. He is the son of William L. and Anna Hayward, who divorced when he was three. His stepfather, Joseph Lerma (1902-1999), was a native of Mexico who later lived in Corpus Christi, Texas, and then Fife Lake, Michigan. In the 1950s, Lerma married his second wife, Anna Hayward; Lerma is interred in Traverse City, Michigan.[4]

Since 2004, William Hayward has worked abroad in Kuwait, Iraq, Spain, and Italy. He also has long-term experience in farming and livestock.[5] His official residence is San Marcos, where he lives with his wife, the former Lulu Wang.

In the second race against Cuellar in 2016, Hayward polled only 5,682 votes (10.2 percent) to Cuellar's 49,962 (89.8 percent).[6] Hayward hence received 43,627 fewer votes as a Democrat than he had four years earlier when he was a Republican candidate.


  1. William Hayward. Mylife.com. Retrieved on September 14, 2017.
  2. William Hayward. ballotpedia.org. Retrieved on December 28, 2015.
  3. Former President Bill Clinton to speak at TAMIU. Laredo Morning Times (February 19, 2016). Retrieved on February 21, 2016.
  4. Joseph Lerma. Findagrave.com. Retrieved on December 29, 2015.
  5. Biography of William Hayward. teapartycheer.com. Retrieved on December 28, 2015.
  6. Democratic Primary returns (March 2, 2016). Retrieved on March 2, 2016.