Cohen, Wilbur J. (Wilbur Joseph), 1913-1987

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Wilbur J. Cohen was Director of the Research and Statistics Bureau of the Wisconsin Health, Education and Welfare Department and the author of several texts on Social Security.

From the guide to the Wilbur J. Cohen, Papers, 1937-1942, (Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Martin P. Catherwood Library, Cornell University.)

Government official.

From the description of Reminiscences of Wilbur Joseph Cohen : oral history, 1976. (Columbia University In the City of New York). WorldCat record id: 122574235

From the description of Reminiscences of Wilbur Joseph Cohen : oral history, 1966. (Columbia University In the City of New York). WorldCat record id: 122597619

From the description of Reminiscences of Wilbur Joseph Cohen : oral history, 1974. (Columbia University In the City of New York). WorldCat record id: 309730147

Wilbur J. Cohen was director of the Research and Statistics Bureau of the Wisconsin Health, Education, and Welfare Department, and technical advisor of the U.S. Advisory Council on Social Security. The Advisory Council was appointed by the Senate Finance Committee in cooperation with the U.S. Social Security Board and was composed of representatives of the public, employers, and employees. The purpose of the Advisory Council was to cooperate with a special subcommittee of the Committee on Finance (Senators Pat Harrison, Harry Flood Byrd, Arthur J. Vandenberg) and the Social Security Board in the study of problems relative to social security, with special attention to the problem of financing an old age insurance system.

From the description of Social security files, 1932-1957. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122685295

Mr. Cohen became assistant secretary for legislation of Health, Education, and Welfare during the administration of President John F. Kennedy, and was in charge of the evaluation and management of all legislation affecting HEW.

From the description of Wilbur J. Cohen : transcript of interview / interviewed by Richard E. McFadyen, Sept. 29, 1973. (National Library of Medicine). WorldCat record id: 61459382

Dean of the School of Education at the University of Michigan.

From the description of Wilbur J. Cohen papers, 1967-1987. (University of Michigan). WorldCat record id: 78730540

From the description of Wilbur Joseph papers, 1967-1987. (University of Michigan). WorldCat record id: 34423535

Wilbur J. Cohen (1913-1987) served on the Committee on Economic Security from 1934 to 1935, which drafted the Social Security Act. From 1935 to 1956, Cohen held several positions with the Social Security Administration, concluding his service as Director of the Division of Research and Statistics (1953-1956). From 1961 to 1969, he served as Assistant Secretary , Under Secretary, and Secretary of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare. He was also the Chairman of the National Commission on Unemployment Compensation from 1978 to 1980.

From the description of Cohen, Wilbur J. (Wilbur Joseph), 1913-1987 (U.S. National Archives and Records Administration). naId: 10582753

Government official.

Cohen served with the Social Security Administration, 1935-1956, the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, 1961-1969, and the National Commission on Unemployment Compensation, 1978-1980.

From the description of Papers, 1941-1980. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 155522020

Wilbur Cohen was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin in 1913. Following his graduation in 1934 from the University of Wisconsin with a degree in economics, he went to Washington to work for Edwin E Witte, who was then directing President Franklin D. Roosevelt's Committee on Economic Security, which was responsible for drafting the first Social Security Act. Cohen joined the newly-formed Social Security Board in 1935 and stayed in the government for two decades, ending in 1956 when he retired as director of the Board's Division of Research and Statistics. That year, he joined the University of Michigan as a professor of public welfare administration, a position he held until 1961.

After the election of President John F. Kennedy, Cohen returned to Washington, taking the position of assistant secretary for legislation in the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare. In 1965, he was elevated to the position of undersecretary in the department, and in 1968 was appointed to be secretary of HEW by President Lyndon Johnson.

In 1969, he returned to the University of Michigan, taking the post of dean in the School of Education. During his deanship at the University of Michigan, Cohen was appointed to chair the Task Force on the Prevention and Investigation of Abuse in State Institutions by Governor William G. Milliken. Cohen accepted the charge in early March 1978, and proceeded to direct the members of the Task Force through the investigations of abuse to institutionalized citizens in the mental health facilities of Southeastern Michigan. It may be presumed that it was Cohen's direction which split the focus of the Task Force from the purely investigative to include research into the means of preventing future abuse. The Task Force reports are clear in their statements indicating that it is not enough for the State of Michigan to act as watchdog, there is also a need to ensure, through appropriate social programs, training, and compensation, the well-being of all Michigan residents.

Cohen retired as dean in 1978, and in 1980 he moved to Austin, Texas to take the position of Sid W. Richardson Professor of Public Affairs at the Lyndon Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas. During his career, Cohen wrote a number of books on the Social Security system and welfare policy. He served in a number of non-profit organizations, including forming and leading Save our Security, a coalition of groups opposed to the cuts in Social Security benefits proposed by President Jimmy Carter's administration. He maintained his interest in social policy and related issues up to his death on May 18, 1987 at the age of seventy three.

From the guide to the Wilbur J. Cohen papers, 1967-1987, (Bentley Historical Library University of Michigan)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Hatcher, Harlan, 1898-1998. Harlan Henthorne Hatcher papers, 1837-1998 (bulk 1891-1986). University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
referencedIn Cohen, Eloise Bittel, 1913-2003. Papers of Eloise Bittel Cohen, 1913-2004 (inclusive). Harvard University, Schlesinger Library
referencedIn Wickenden, Elizabeth, 1909-2001. Elizabeth Wickenden papers, 1885-2001. Wisconsin Historical Society, Newspaper Project
referencedIn Elliot L. Richardson Papers, 1780-1999, (bulk 1947-1999) Library of Congress. Manuscript Division
referencedIn Christian Archibald Herter papers, 1929-1967 (inclusive), 1943-1966 (bulk). Houghton Library.
referencedIn Harlan Henthorne Hatcher Papers, 1837-1998, 1891-1986 Bentley Historical Library , University of Michigan
referencedIn Somers, Herman Miles, 1911-. Herman Miles Somers papers, 1936-1979 (inclusive). Yale University Library
referencedIn John Butlin Martin papers, 1948-1965 Bentley Historical Library , University of Michigan
referencedIn Alumni Association (University of Michigan), Individual Photographs, ca. 1880-ca. 1960s Bentley Historical Library , University of Michigan
referencedIn Eliot, Martha M. (Martha May), b. 1891. Papers, 1870-1978 (inclusive). Harvard University, Schlesinger Library
creatorOf Cohen, Wilbur J. (Wilbur Joseph), 1913-1987. Reminiscences of Wilbur Joseph Cohen : oral history, 1974. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
creatorOf Cohen, Wilbur J. (Wilbur Joseph), 1913-1987. Wilbur Joseph papers, 1967-1987. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
referencedIn Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield. Hospital administration oral history collection, 1982-1986. Campbell University, Wiggins Memorial Library
creatorOf Cohen, Wilbur J. (Wilbur Joseph), 1913-1987. Wilbur J. Cohen papers, 1967-1987. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
creatorOf Altman, Ralph,. Unemployment insurance oral history project, 1981. Wisconsin Historical Society, Newspaper Project
referencedIn Dwight D. Eisenhower Library Oral History Collection. 1962 - 1998. Oral History Transcripts. 1962 - 1998. Oral History Interview with Wilbur J. Cohen
referencedIn Falk, I. S. (Isidore Sydney), 1899-1984. Isidore Sydney Falk papers, 1918-1984 (inclusive). Yale University Library
creatorOf Dana, Samuel Trask, 1883-1978. Samuel Trask Dana papers, 1893-1970. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
referencedIn Weinerman, E. Richard (Edwin Richard), 1917-1970. Edwin Richard Weinerman papers, 1908-1970 (inclusive). Yale University Library
Wilbur J. Cohen Papers
referencedIn Altmeyer, Arthur J. (Arthur Joseph), 1891-1972. Arthur J. Altmeyer papers, 1904-1973. Wisconsin Historical Society, Newspaper Project
creatorOf Cohen, Wilbur J. (Wilbur Joseph), 1913-1987,. Social security files, 1932-1957. Campbell University, Wiggins Memorial Library
referencedIn Samuel T. Dana papers, 1893-1970, 1925-1968 Bentley Historical Library , University of Michigan
referencedIn U.S. Dept. of Health, Education, and Welfare Secretaries' Speeches, 1961-1979 History of Medicine Division. National Library of Medicine
referencedIn Isidore Sydney Falk papers, 1918-1984 Yale University. Department of Manuscripts and Archives
creatorOf Cohen, Wilbur J. (Wilbur Joseph), 1913-1987. Reminiscences of Wilbur Joseph Cohen : oral history, 1976. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
referencedIn Papers, 1936-1979 Harvard Law School Library, Harvard University.
referencedIn Durr, Virginia Foster. Papers: Series I, 1919-1988 (inclusive). Harvard University, Schlesinger Library
referencedIn Herman Miles Somers papers, 1936-1979 Yale University. Department of Manuscripts and Archives
creatorOf Wilbur J. Cohen Papers. 1935 - 1987. Office Files
referencedIn President's Daily Diary. 11/22/1963 - 1/20/1969. President's Daily Diary. 11/22/1963 - 1/20/1969. President's Daily Diary Entry, March 31, 1968
creatorOf Haber, William, 1899-1988. William Haber papers, 1918-1988. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
referencedIn WUOM records, 1914-1982, 1940s-1960s Bentley Historical Library , University of Michigan
referencedIn Anne Ramsay Somers papers, 1955-2006 Yale University. Department of Manuscripts and Archives
referencedIn George W. Pray Papers, 1844-1890 Bentley Historical Library , University of Michigan
creatorOf White House Central Files (Johnson Administration). 11/22/1963 - 1/20/1969. White House Subject Files on Health
referencedIn Edwin Richard Weinerman papers, 1908-1970 Yale University. Department of Manuscripts and Archives
referencedIn Anderson, Clinton Presba, 1895-. Papers of Clinton Presba Anderson, 1938-1972 (bulk 1948-1972). Library of Congress
creatorOf White House Central Files (Johnson Administration). 11/22/1963 - 1/20/1969. White House Subject Files on Insurance. 11/22/1963 - 1/20/1969. Accident, Hospital, Medical, and Health Insurance (IS 1)
creatorOf [Wilbur J. Cohen, biographical materials] University of Wisconsin - Madison, General Library System
creatorOf Wilbur J. Cohen papers, 1967-1987 Bentley Historical Library , University of Michigan
creatorOf United States. Dept. of Health, Education, and Welfare. U.S. Dept. of Health, Education, and Welfare secretaries' speeches, 1961-1979. National Library of Medicine
creatorOf Cohen, Wilbur J. (Wilbur Joseph), 1913-1987. Reminiscences of Wilbur Joseph Cohen : oral history, 1966. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
referencedIn Clinton Presba Anderson Papers, 1938-1973, (bulk 1948-1973) Library of Congress. Manuscript Division
referencedIn Richardson, Elliot L., 1920-1999. Papers of Elliot L. Richardson, 1780-1991 (bulk 1947-1991). Library of Congress
referencedIn Save Our Security. Records, 1982-1997. Wisconsin Historical Society, Newspaper Project
referencedIn Papers, 1919-1991 Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute
creatorOf Wilbur J. Cohen, Papers, 1937-1942 Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, Martin P. Catherwood Library, Cornell University.
referencedIn Somers, Anne Ramsay. Anne Ramsay Somers papers, 1948-2006 (inclusive). Yale University Library
creatorOf Cohen, Wilbur J. (Wilbur Joseph), 1913-1987. Wilbur J. Cohen papers, 1930-1987 (bulk 1935-1979). Wisconsin Historical Society, Newspaper Project
referencedIn Margaret Bayne Price Papers, 1918-1969, 1947-1968 Bentley Historical Library , University of Michigan
creatorOf Wilbur J. Cohen Papers. 1935 - 1987. Personal Files
creatorOf Cohen, Wilbur J. (Wilbur Joseph), 1913-1987. Wilbur J. Cohen : transcript of interview / interviewed by Richard E. McFadyen, Sept. 29, 1973. National Library of Medicine
creatorOf Cohen, Wilbur J. (Wilbur Joseph), 1913-1987. Wilbur J. Cohen, Papers, 1937-1942. Cornell University Library
referencedIn Berkowitz, Edward D. Papers, 1934-1991. Wisconsin Historical Society, Newspaper Project
creatorOf Cohen, Wilbur J. (Wilbur Joseph), 1913-1987. Papers, 1941-1980. Campbell University, Wiggins Memorial Library
referencedIn William Haber Papers, 1918-1988 Bentley Historical Library , University of Michigan
creatorOf Martin, John Butlin, 1909-. John Butlin Martin papers, 1948-1965. University of Michigan, Bentley Historical Library
referencedIn Pitzele, Merlyn S., 1911-. Papers, 1932-1971. Wisconsin Historical Society, Newspaper Project
referencedIn Papers, 1898-1975 Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute
referencedIn Witte, Edwin E. (Edwin Emil), 1887-1960. Edwin E. Witte papers, 1903-1970. Wisconsin Historical Society, Newspaper Project
Role Title Holding Repository
Direct Relationships
Relation Name
associatedWith Altmeyer, Arthur J. (Arthur Joseph), 1891-1972. person
correspondedWith Anderson, Clinton Presba, 1895- person
associatedWith Ball, Robert M. (Robert Myers), 1914-2008. person
associatedWith Berkowitz, Edward D. person
associatedWith Brown, J. Douglas (James Douglas), 1898-1986. person
associatedWith Burg, Maclyn, person
associatedWith Cohen, Eloise Bittel, 1913-2003. person
associatedWith Conference on Inflation (1978 : Washington, D.C.) corporateBody
associatedWith Conference on Inflation (1978 : Washington, D.C.) corporateBody
associatedWith Corning, Peter A., 1935-, person
associatedWith Corson, John Jay, 1905- person
associatedWith Cruikshank, Nelson H. person
associatedWith Dana, Samuel Trask, 1883-1978. person
associatedWith Democratic Party (U.S.) corporateBody
associatedWith Dingell, John D. person
associatedWith Doughton, Robert Lee, 1863-1954. person
associatedWith Douglas, Paul H. (Paul Howard), 1892-1976. person
associatedWith Dulles, Eleanor Lansing, 1895-1996. person
associatedWith Durr, Virginia Foster. person
associatedWith Eliot, Martha M. (Martha May), b. 1891. person
associatedWith Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield. corporateBody
associatedWith Epstein, Abraham, 1892-1942. person
associatedWith Falk, I. S. (Isidore Sydney), 1899- person
associatedWith Flemming, Arthur S. (Arthur Sherwood), 1905-1996. person
associatedWith Fogarty, John Edward, 1913-1967. person
associatedWith Forand, Aimé Joseph, 1895-1972. person
associatedWith Gardner, John W. (John William), 1912-2002. person
associatedWith George, Walter F. (Walter Franklin), 1878-1957. person
associatedWith Haber, William, 1899-1988. person
associatedWith Harrison, B. P. (Burr Powell), 1904-1973. person
associatedWith Hatcher, Harlan, 1898-1998. person
correspondedWith Herter, Christian Archibald, 1895-1966 person
associatedWith Hill, Lister, 1894-1984. person
associatedWith Humphrey, Hubert H. (Hubert Horatio), 1911-1978. person
associatedWith Irwin, Leo Howard, 1917-1995. person
associatedWith Jackson, Henry M. (Henry Martin), 1912-1983. person
associatedWith Johnson, Lester R. (Lester Roland), 1901-1975. person
associatedWith Kean, Robert, 1893-1980. person
associatedWith Kennedy, Edward M. (Edward Moore), 1932-2009. person
associatedWith Kennedy, John F. (John Fitzgerald), 1917-1963. person
associatedWith Kerr, Robert S. (Robert Samuel), 1896-1963. person
associatedWith Latimer, Murray W. person
associatedWith Long, Russell B. person
associatedWith Lubin, Isador, 1896- person
associatedWith MARTHA MAY ELIOT, 1891-1978 person
associatedWith Martin, John Butlin, 1909- person
associatedWith McFadyen, Richard E., 1943- person
associatedWith McGovern, George S. (George Stanley), 1922- person
associatedWith Michigan. Governor's Task Force on Prevention and Investigation of Abuse in State Institutions. corporateBody
associatedWith Mills, Wilbur D. (Wilbur Daigh), 1909-1992. person
associatedWith Morse, Wayne L. (Wayne Lyman), 1900-1974. person
associatedWith Myers, Robert J. (Robert Julius), 1912-2010. person
associatedWith Pepper, Claude, 1900-1989. person
associatedWith Perkins, Carl Dewey, 1912-1984. person
associatedWith Pickle, J. J. person
associatedWith Pitzele, Merlyn S., 1911- person
associatedWith Pitzele, Merlyn S., 1911-1996. person
associatedWith Pray, George Washington, 1825-1890 person
associatedWith Price, Margaret Bayne, 1912-1968 person
associatedWith Reuss, Henry S. person
associatedWith Richardson, Elliot L., 1920-1999. person
associatedWith Rieve, Emil, 1892-1975. person
associatedWith Rivlin, Alice M. person
associatedWith Sargent, James E., 1941-, person
associatedWith Save Our Security. corporateBody
associatedWith Save Our Security. corporateBody
associatedWith Shriver, Sargent, 1915-2011. person
associatedWith Sohn, Louis B. person
associatedWith Somers, Anne Ramsay. person
associatedWith Somers, Herman Miles, 1911- person
associatedWith Sorensen, Theodore C. person
associatedWith United States. Advisory Council on Social Security (1937-1938). Interim Committee. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Dept. of Health, Education, and Welfare. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. National Commission on Unemployment Compensation. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Social Security Administration. corporateBody
associatedWith United States. Social Security Board. corporateBody
associatedWith University of Michigan corporateBody
associatedWith University of Michigan. Alumni Association. corporateBody
associatedWith University of Michigan. School of Education. corporateBody
associatedWith University of Michigan. School of Social Work. corporateBody
associatedWith Wagner, Robert F. (Robert Ferdinand), 1877-1953. person
associatedWith Weinerman, E. Richard (Edwin Richard), 1917-1970. person
associatedWith Wickenden, Elizabeth, 1909-2001. person
associatedWith Williamson, W. R. (William Rulon), 1889- person
associatedWith Witte, Edwin E. (Edwin Emil), 1887-1960. person
associatedWith WUOM (Radio station : Ann Arbor, Mich.) corporateBody
Place Name Admin Code Country
United States
United States
United States
United States
United States
Michigan--Detroit
Michigan--Kalamazoo
United States
Michigan
Subject
Government executives--Interviews
Inflation (Finance)
Social security--Costs
Legislation, Drug--Interview
Legislation, Food--Autobiography
Insurance, Unemployment
Education--Michigan
Guaranteed annual income
Unemployment insurance
Old age pensions
Medicare
People with disabilities--Services for--Finance
Unemployment--Statistics
Federal aid to child welfare
Social security--Law and legislation
Disability insurance
Insurance, Unemployment--Governement policy
Disability evaluation
Segregation in education--Michigan--Detroit
Unemployment insurance--Governement policy
Old age assistance
Segregation in education--Michigan--Kalamazoo
Legislation, Food--Interview
Pensions--Finance
Segregation in education
Social problems
Legislation, Drug--Autobiography
Pensions
Economic security
Education
Social security
Federal aid to services for people with disabilities
Occupation
Public officers
Collector
Function

Person

Birth 1913-06-10

Death 1987-05-17

Americans

English

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