Colin Powell

Colin Powell 1937-
Retired General
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.

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