General Colin L. Powell became the 65th Secretary of State on January 20, 2001. Previously, General Powell served as a key aide to the Secretary of Defense and as National Security Advisor to President Reagan. He served 35 years in the United States Army, rising to the rank of Four-Star General and serving as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (1989 – 1993). General Powell was educated in the New York City public schools, graduating from the City College of New York (CCNY), where he earned a bachelor’s degree in geology. He also participated in ROTC at CCNY and received a commission as an Army second lieutenant upon graduation in June, 1958. General Powell’s further academic achievements include a master of business administration degree from George Washington University. He is the recipient of numerous U.S. military awards.
Colin and Alma Powell were the recipients of the 2010 John W. Gardner Leadership Award.