Appointed by President Ronald Reagan
George Pratt Shultz was born in New York City on December 13, 1920, the son and only child of Birl E. and Margaret Shultz. At a young age, Shultz's family moved to Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey, where he spent a happy childhood. His father worked at the New York Stock Exchange, where the young George often spent Saturday mornings while his father worked. Shultz lived with his parents until his college years at Princeton, where he pursued a major in economics and a minor in public and international affairs.
Upon receipt of his bachelor's degree in 1942, Shultz applied for graduate school in economics at the Massachusetts Institute for Technology (MIT). He was accepted into the program of Industrial Economics, but instead joined the marines and after training was shipped to the South Pacific, where he saw action during 1943-1945. After the war, he began graduate studies at MIT and was married. He completed his Ph.D. in industrial economics in 1949 and stayed on at MIT, where he coauthored three books on labor and wage issues. He taught at MIT until 1957 and served for a year in 1955-1956 on President Dwight D. Eisenhower's Council of Economic Advisers under Chairman Arthur Burns. In 1957, Shultz took a professorship in industrial relations at the Graduate School of Business at the University of Chicago. While authoring additional books at Chicago, Shultz also served as Dean of the Graduate School of Business from 1962-1968 and as a fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in Behavioral Sciences from 1968-1969. After two decades in academia, Shultz was tapped by President Richard Nixon, to serve as secretary of labor in 1969, launching his first tour in government service.
Shultz was well prepared to become secretary of labor, where he undertook a reform of the Job Corps and addressed the oil import control system. His noninterventionist policies in handing a major longshoreman's strike, which began under the Johnson administration and continued into that of Nixon's, proved successful in putting pressure on labor and management to resolve that dispute through collec-tive bargaining. With several successes at the department of labor under his belt, it
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Publication information: Book title: American Statesmen: Secretaries of State from John Jay to Colin Powell. Contributors: Edward S. Mihalkanin - Editor. Publisher: Greenwood Press. Place of publication: Westport, CT. Publication year: 2004. Page number: 472.
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