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Bush, George Herbert Walker: Career in Business and Government

His father, Prescott Bush, was a successful investment banker and a Republican Senator (1953?63) from Connecticut. After graduating from Phillips Academy in Andover, Mass., he served as a fighter pilot during World War II and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. He married (see Bush, Barbara) and studied at Yale after the war and subsequently moved to Texas, where he cofounded the Zapata Petroleum Corp. A Republican, he ran unsuccessfully for the U.S. Senate in 1964, but in 1966 he was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives and sold his business interests. After losing a second race for the U.S. Senate in 1970, he served in several posts under Presidents Nixon and Ford, including ambassador to the United Nations (1971?73), chairman of the Republican national committee (1973?74), chief of the U.S. liaison office in China (1974?75), and director of the Central Intelligence Agency (1976?77).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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