Birthplace: New York, NY
Graduate of City College, 1958
Powell entered the U.S. Army as a commissioned officer and served two tours
of duty in Vietnam. He became a major general and the military assistant
to the deputy secretary of defense (1979-1981). He then assumed command
of the 4th Infantry Division. Powell was military assistant to the secretary
of defense (1983-1986) and in 1986 he served as commander of the V Corps,
Europe. The next year, he was named assistant to the president for national
security affairs. He then became a four-star general and was appointed chairman
of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (1989-93), the youngest ever. Powell was the
highest ranking African-American officer in U.S. history. He had important
roles in planning America's invasion of Panama in 1989 and the U.S. victory
in the Persian Gulf War in 1991. In 1995 he declined to run for the U.S.
presidency despite widespread popular sentiment. He was President Bush's Secretary of State.
If you need to teach it, we have it covered.
Start your free trial to gain instant access to thousands of expertly curated worksheets, activities, and lessons created by educational publishers and teachers.
Start Your Free Trial