Rumsfeld, Donald, 1932-2021

Variant names

Hide Profile

Donald Henry Rumsfeld (July 9, 1932 – June 29, 2021) was an American politician, government official and businessman who served as Secretary of Defense from 1975 to 1977 under Gerald Ford, and again from 2001 to 2006 under George W. Bush. He was both the youngest and the second-oldest person to have served as Secretary of Defense. Additionally, Rumsfeld was a three-term U.S. Congressman from Illinois (1963–1969), director of the Office of Economic Opportunity (1969–1970), counsellor to the president (1969–1973), the United States Permanent Representative to NATO (1973–1974), and White House Chief of Staff (1974–1975). Between his terms as Secretary of Defense, he served as the CEO and chairman of several companies.

Born in Illinois, Rumsfeld attended Princeton University, graduating in 1954 with a degree in political science. After serving in the Navy for three years, he mounted a campaign for Congress in Illinois's 13th Congressional District and serving as a legislative assistant to , winning in 1962 at the age of 30. While in Congress, he was a leading co-sponsor of the Freedom of Information Act. Rumsfeld accepted an appointment by President Richard Nixon to head the Office of Economic Opportunity in 1969; appointed counsellor by Nixon and entitled to Cabinet-level status, he also headed up the Economic Stabilization Program before being appointed ambassador to NATO. Called back to Washington in August 1974, Rumsfeld was appointed chief of staff by President Ford. Rumsfeld recruited a young one-time staffer of his, Dick Cheney, to succeed him when Ford nominated him to be Secretary of Defense in 1975. When Ford lost the 1976 election, Rumsfeld returned to private business and financial life, and was named president and CEO of the pharmaceutical corporation G. D. Searle & Company. He was later named CEO of General Instrument from 1990 to 1993 and chairman of Gilead Sciences from 1997 to 2001.

Rumsfeld was appointed Secretary of Defense for a second time in January 2001 by President George W. Bush. As Secretary of Defense, Rumsfeld played a central role in the invasion of Afghanistan and invasion of Iraq. Before and during the Iraq War, he claimed that Iraq had an active weapons of mass destruction program; yet no stockpiles were ever found. A Pentagon Inspector General report found that Rumsfeld's top policy aide "developed, produced, and then disseminated alternative intelligence assessments on the Iraq and al Qaida relationship, which included some conclusions that were inconsistent with the consensus of the Intelligence Community, to senior decision-makers". Rumsfeld's tenure was controversial for its use of torture and the Abu Ghraib torture and prisoner abuse scandal. Rumsfeld gradually lost political support and resigned in late 2006. In his retirement years, he published an autobiography, Known and Unknown: A Memoir, as well as Rumsfeld's Rules: Leadership Lessons in Business, Politics, War, and Life. He died on June 29, 2021, at the age of 88.

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
referencedIn McNamee, Wally, 1932-2017. Wally McNamee Photographic Archive, ca. 1950-2017 Dolph Briscoe Center for American History
referencedIn Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Camp David hard wire tape number 231
referencedIn Records of the Office of the Secretary of Defense. 1921 - 2008. Combined Military Service Digital Photographic Files. 1982 - 2007. U.S. Secretary of Defense The Honorable Donald H. Rumsfeld (background center), and the new seven NATO allies during a ceremony on the steps at the Corcoran Art Gallery, March 29, 2004. (DoD photo by STAFF SGT. Jerry Morrison Jr.) (Released)
creatorOf Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Oval Office tape number 741
referencedIn Hagstrum, Jean H., 1913-1995. Jean Hagstrum Papers, 1921-1995. Northwestern University
referencedIn Robert A. Goldwin Papers. 1973 - 1978. General Subject Files
referencedIn Train, Russell E., 1920-. Russell E. Train papers, 1898-2005 (bulk 1957-2005). Library of Congress
referencedIn Burch, Dean. Dean Burch papers. 1964-1973. Arizona State University Libraries
creatorOf Memoranda of Conversations (Nixon and Ford Administrations). 1973 - 1977. Ford Administration Memoranda of Conversations. 8/1974 - 1/1977. June 19, 1975 - Ford, Kissinger, NATO Secretary General Joseph Luns, NATO Ambassadors
creatorOf James E. Connor Files. 1974 - 1977. Cabinet Secretary's Subject Files
referencedIn Evans, Rowland, 1921-2001. Rowland Evans Jr. and Robert D. Novak papers, 1948-2008. Wisconsin Historical Society, Newspaper Project
creatorOf Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Executive Office Building tape number 276
creatorOf Memoranda of Conversations (Nixon and Ford Administrations). 1973 - 1977. Ford Administration Memoranda of Conversations. 8/1974 - 1/1977. January 7, 1976 - Ford, Kissinger, Scowcroft, Rumsfeld
creatorOf Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Oval Office tape number 463 National Archives at College Park
referencedIn Hare, David, 1947-. Stuff happens : a play / by David Hare, 2006. New York Public Library System, NYPL
creatorOf Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Oval Office tape number 542 National Archives at College Park
creatorOf Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Oval Office tape number 894 Richard Nixon Library
referencedIn Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Oval Office tape number 878
referencedIn Guide to the Daily Worker and Daily World Photographs Collection, 1920-2001 Tamiment Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives
referencedIn Records of U.S. Air Force Commands, Activities, and Organizations. 1900 - 2003. Moving Images Relating to Military Aviation Activities. 1947 - 1984. Secy Rumsfeld flies B-1, Edwards AFB, California
referencedIn Floyd B. McKissick Papers, 1940s-1980s University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Library. Southern Historical Collection
referencedIn Records of the Federal Emergency Management Agency. 1956 - 2008. Photographs of Civil Defense Personnel and Activities National Archives at College Park
referencedIn Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Oval Office tape number 671
creatorOf Rumsfeld, Donald, 1932-. Donald Rumsfeld papers, 1888-2008 (bulk 1963-2007). Library of Congress
referencedIn Records of the Office of the Secretary of Defense. 1921 - 2008. Combined Military Service Digital Photographic Files
referencedIn Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Camp David hard wire tape number 229
referencedIn Weinberger, Caspar W. Caspar W. Weinberger papers, 1910-2005 (bulk 1951-2005). Library of Congress
creatorOf Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Oval Office tape number 480 National Archives at College Park
creatorOf Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. White House telephone tape number 17
creatorOf James E. Connor Files. 1974 - 1977. Courier Materials
creatorOf James E. Connor Files. 1974 - 1977. Staff Secretary's Subject Files
creatorOf Donald Rumsfeld Papers, 1888-2008, (bulk 1963-2007) Library of Congress. Manuscript Division
referencedIn Outside the System Chronological Files (Ford Administration). 1974 - 1977. Outside the System Files
referencedIn Records of the Office of the Secretary of Defense. 1921 - 2008. Speeches and Other Public Papers
creatorOf Morton, Thruston Ballard, 1907-1982. Thruston Ballard Morton papers, 1968-1982. The Filson Historical Society
creatorOf Gingiss, Benjamin J., 1911-1999. Benjamin Gingiss papers, 1905, 1925-1987 (bulk 1965-1985). Chicago History Museum
referencedIn Williams, Lynn A., 1909-1985. Lynn A. Williams papers, 1945-1981. Chicago History Museum
referencedIn Records of the Office of the Secretary of Defense. 1921 - 2008. Sound Recordings of Secretaries of Defense
referencedIn Caspar W. Weinberger Papers, 1910-2005, (bulk 1951-2005) Library of Congress. Manuscript Division
creatorOf Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Oval Office tape number 854
creatorOf Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Executive Office Building tape number 287
referencedIn McNamee, Wally, 1932-2017. Wally McNamee Photographic Archive, ca. 1950-2017 Dolph Briscoe Center for American History
creatorOf Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Oval Office tape number 794
creatorOf Memoranda of Conversations (Nixon and Ford Administrations). 1973 - 1977. Ford Administration Memoranda of Conversations. 8/1974 - 1/1977. June 23, 1975 - Ford, Kissinger, Rumsfeld, Marsh, Friedersdorf, Representatives Hamilton, Whalen, Sarbanes
referencedIn Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Cabinet Room tape number 105
creatorOf White House Staff Member and Office Files (Nixon Administration). 1/20/1969 - 8/9/1974. Bryce N. Harlow's Files Richard Nixon Library
creatorOf Memoranda of Conversations (Nixon and Ford Administrations). 1973 - 1977. Ford Administration Memoranda of Conversations. 8/1974 - 1/1977. September 25, 1975 - Ford, Bipartisan Congressional Leadership
creatorOf Thimmesch, Nick. Papers of Nick Thimmesch, 1955-1985. University of Iowa Libraries
referencedIn Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Oval Office tape number 544 Richard Nixon Library
creatorOf Bond, Julian, 1940-. Julian Bond papers [manuscript], circa 1943-2006. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Executive Office Building tape number 286
creatorOf Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Executive Office Building tape number 294
referencedIn Russell E. Train Papers, 1898-2005, (bulk 1957-2005) Library of Congress. Manuscript Division
referencedIn Sive, David. The David Sive Archive: Pioneering Environmental Litigation, 1962-1992. New York State Historical Documents (Albany, N.Y.)
creatorOf Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations (Nixon Administration). 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Sound Recordings of Meetings and Telephone Conversations. 2/16/1971 - 7/18/1973. Cabinet Room tape number 97 Richard Nixon Library
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith ABB Asea Brown Boveri Ltd. corporateBody
correspondedWith Adelman, Kenneth L. (Kenneth Lee), 1946- person
associatedWith Amylin Pharmaceuticals. corporateBody
associatedWith Bond, Julian, 1940- person
correspondedWith Buckley, William F. (William Frank), 1925-2008 person
associatedWith Burch, Dean, 1927- person
correspondedWith Bush, George, 1924- person
associatedWith Bush, George W. (George Walker), 1946- person
correspondedWith Carlucci, Frank Charles, 1930- person
almaMaterOf Case Western Reserve Law School. corporateBody
correspondedWith Cheney, Richard B. person
correspondedWith Church, Marguerite Stitt, 1892-1990 person
associatedWith Communist Party of the United States of America. corporateBody
correspondedWith Dirksen, Everett McKinley person
associatedWith Economic Stabilization Program. corporateBody
associatedWith Evans, Rowland, 1921-2001. person
associatedWith Ford, Gerald R., 1913-2006. person
employeeOf G. D. Searle and Company. corporateBody
associatedWith G.D. Searle & Co. corporateBody
associatedWith G.D. Searle & Co. corporateBody
employeeOf General Instrument Corporation corporateBody
associatedWith General Instrument Corporation. corporateBody
almaMaterOf Georgetown University. Law Center. corporateBody
associatedWith Gilead Sciences (Firm) corporateBody
employeeOf Gilead Sciences (Firm) corporateBody
associatedWith Gingiss, Benjamin J., 1911-1999. person
correspondedWith Gingrich, Newt person
correspondedWith Gingrich, Newt person
associatedWith Hagstrum, Jean H., 1913-1995 person
correspondedWith Haig, Alexander Meigs, 1924-2010 person
associatedWith Hare, David, 1947- person
associatedWith House Republican Conference (U.S.) corporateBody
associatedWith Johnson, Lyndon B. (Lyndon Baines), 1908-1973. person
correspondedWith Kissinger, Henry, 1923- person
correspondedWith Kissinger, Henry, 1923- person
correspondedWith McKissick, Floyd B. (Floyd Bixler), 1922- person
associatedWith McNamee, Wally person
associatedWith McNamee, Wally. person
associatedWith Morton, Thruston Ballard, 1907-1982. person
correspondedWith Moss, John E. (John Emerson), 1913- person
correspondedWith Moynihan, Daniel P. (Daniel Patrick), 1927-2003 person
associatedWith National Economic Commission (U.S.) corporateBody
associatedWith National Park Foundation. corporateBody
associatedWith Nixon, Richard M. (Richard Milhous), 1913-1994. person
associatedWith North Atlantic Treaty Organization corporateBody
associatedWith North Atlantic Treaty Organization. corporateBody
correspondedWith Percy, Charles H., 1919- person
correspondedWith Peres, Shimon, 1923- person
associatedWith President's Club. corporateBody
alumnusOrAlumnaOf Princeton University corporateBody
associatedWith Project Apollo (U.S.) corporateBody
associatedWith Rand Corporation. corporateBody
associatedWith Reagan, Ronald. person
associatedWith Republican Party (U.S. : 1854- ) corporateBody
associatedWith Rumsfeld family. family
associatedWith Rumsfeld family. family
correspondedWith Scowcroft, Brent person
correspondedWith Scowcroft, Brent person
associatedWith Sears, Roebuck and Company. corporateBody
correspondedWith Shultz, George Pratt, 1920- person
associatedWith Sive, David. person
associatedWith Thimmesch, Nick. person
correspondedWith Train, Russell E., 1920- person
associatedWith Tribune Company. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Agency for International Development. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Commission to Assess National Security Space Management and Organization. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Commission to Assess the Ballistic Missile Threat to the United States. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Congress corporateBody
memberOf United States. Congress. House. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Congress. House. Committee on Government Operations. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Congress. House. Committee on Science and Astronautics. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Congress. Joint Economic Committee. corporateBody
leaderOf United States. Cost of Living Council corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Cost of Living Council. corporateBody
leaderOf United States. Department of Defense. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Dept. of Defense. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Freedom of Information Act. corporateBody
associatedWith United States-Japan Advisory Commission. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Legislative Reorganization Act of 1970. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. National Aeronautics and Space Administration. corporateBody
leaderOf United States. Office of Economic Opportunity. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Selective Service System. corporateBody
associatedWith U.S. Trade Deficit Review Commission. corporateBody
associatedWith Weinberger, Caspar W. person
associatedWith Weinberger, Caspar W. person
associatedWith White House (Washington, D.C.) corporateBody
associatedWith Williams, Lynn A., 1909-1985. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Taos NM US
Winnetka IL US
Coronado CA US
Cleveland OH US
Chicago IL US
District of Columbia DC US
Colfax County NM US
Grosse Ile MI US
Brussels BRU BE
Princeton NJ US
Subject
Astronautics, Military
Ballistic missile defenses--United States
Presidents--United States--Staff
Weapons of mass destruction--Government policy--United States
Pharmaceutical industry
Campaign funds--United States
Economic stabilization--United States
Presidents--Election
Draft--United States
Balance of trade--United States
Presidents--Staff
Weapons of mass destruction--Government policy
Economic stabilization
Legislative oversight--United States
Astronautics and state--United States
Legislative oversight
Urban policy--United States
Eisenhower fellowships
Freedom of information
Ballistic missile defenses
Eisenhower fellowships--United States
Astronautics and state
Freedom of information--United States
Space vehicle accidents--United States
Urban policy
Draft
Space vehicle accidents
Law of the sea
Astronautics, Military--United States
Campaign funds
Terrorism--Government policy--United States
Science and state
Science and state--United States
Presidents--United States--Election
Civil rights
Law of the sea--United States
Vietnam War, 1961-1975
Civil rights--United States
Balance of trade
National security
Pharmaceutical industry--United States
National security--United States
Terrorism--Government policy
Occupation
Chief executive officers
Investment bankers
Diplomats
Representatives, U.S. Congress--Illinois
Authors
Businessmen
Cabinet officers
Legislative assistants
Activity

Person

Birth 1932-07-09

Death 2021-06-29

Male

Americans

English

Information

Permalink: http://n2t.net/ark:/99166/w67q9px1

Ark ID: w67q9px1

SNAC ID: 85533805