Cohen, William S.

Alternative names
Birth 1940-08-28

Biographical notes:

William S. Cohen was born on August 28, 1940 in Bangor, Maine, to Reuben and Clara Cohen. He graduated from Bangor High School in 1958, from Bowdoin College in 1962 and received his law degree in 1965 from Boston University Law School. He worked as a lawyer in Bangor, taught business classes at University of Maine and Husson College, and volunteered for community service. Cohen was elected to public office as a city councilor in Bangor in 1969 and as Mayor of Bangor for a two-year term in 1970-1972. He became a fellow at the John F. Kennedy Institute of Politics in 1972. He was elected as a Republican to the U.S. House of Representatives in November of 1972 from Maine's Second Congressional District. He sat as a junior member on the House Judiciary Committee during the Nixon impeachment inquiry concerning Watergate. Cohen was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1978 and was a member of the Select Committee on Intelligence investigating the Iran-Contra affair during President Reagan's administration. He maintained an interest in government ethics throughout his career. Senator Cohen also served on the Governmental Affairs Committee, the Committee on Aging, and the Armed Services Committee. He retired from the Senate in 1996 and served as Secretary of Defense from January 1997 to January 2001. An accomplished author, Cohen has published books of poetry, fiction, and non-fiction.

From the description of Papers, 1955-2001 (bulk 1972-2001). (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 51843539


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  • Television advertising
  • Military intelligence--Archival resources
  • Political refugees
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  • Human rights advocacy
  • Watergate Affair, 1972-1974--Archival resources
  • Russian Americans
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