General Colin Powell
Born in Harlem, in 1937 to Jamaican immigrants, General Colin Powell served courageously in the U.S. Army long before he set foot in the White House. While guarding the border of South Vietnam and Laos as a Second Lieutenant, Powell was wounded by a booby trap, and given the Purple Heart and Bronze star. He was injured again during his second tour, this time in a helicopter crash. Powell managed to still rescue his comrades from the flames and was awarded the Soldier's Medal. His military decorations total 11 in all. A fellowship at the White House launched him into his government career. By the time he was a Brigadier General, Powell was assistant to the Deputy Secretary for the Jimmy Carter Administration. Soon after he became a Major General, Powell left Washington to serve as commander of the Fifth Corps in Germany, and was then recalled to Washington as the deputy to Frank Carlucci. Once a Lieutenant General, Powell became the first African American to serve as the Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs, as well as the first African American to serve in every position he has held since. Powell became a prominent national figure as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff when the Desert Shield and Desert Storm operations successfully expelled the Iraqi army from Kuwait. In 1994, Powell retired from the military, and became the Chairman of America's Promise, a national organization dedicated to the advancement of America's children, developing a way to provide them with the necessary ingredients to become successful adults. In 2001, newly elected President George W. Bush appointed Colin Powell to be Secretary of State. Powell gained great acclaim for his efficient administration of the State Department, and for constantly pursuing amiable relations with other governments. After the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Secretary Powell played a prominent role in uniting America's allies for military action in Afghanistan. Ever since he graduated at the top of his Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) class in 1957, General Colin Powell has served his country, making courageous progress in the pursuit of peaceful and diplomatic foreign relations.
"Luck tends to come to people that are well prepared."
"No battle plan survives contact with the enemy."