William S. Cohen

William Cohen

Secretary of Defense

William S. Cohen was born on August 28, 1940 in Bangor, Maine. His father Reuben, a baker, was a Russian-Jewish immigrant and his mother, Clara, is of Irish-Protestant descent. Cohen graduated from Bangor High School in 1958, and from Bowdoin College with an A.B. cum laude in Latin in 1962. An accomplished athlete, he was named to the Maine all-state high school and college basketball teams, and, while at Bowdoin, he was inducted into the New England All-Star Hall of Fame. In 1965, he received his LL.B cum laude from Boston University Law School and, during that same year, he became the assistant editor- in-chief of the American Trial Lawyers Association and a partner in a Bangor law firm.

Cohen was the Assistant County Attorney for Penobscot County from 1968 to 1970. In 1968, he was an instructor at Husson College in Bangor. He held an appointment as an instructor in business administration at the University of Maine from 1968 to 1972. Cohen was the vice president of the Maine Trial Lawyers Association from 1970 to 1972, and a member of the Bangor School Board from 1971 to 1972. He was a fellow at the John F. Kennedy Institute of Politics at Harvard University in 1972, and was named one of the U.S. Jaycee's ten outstanding young men in 1975.

Photo obtained from: http://www.nndb.com

William S. Cohen
Landon Lecture
September 12, 1997