Here’s a look at the life of former CIA Director and Defense Secretary Robert Gates.
Birthday date: September 25, 1943
Birth place: Wichita, Kansas
Birth name: Robert Michael Gates
Father: Melville A. Gates, wholesale auto parts dealer
Mother: Isabel V. Gates
Marriage: Rebecca (Wilkie) Gates (1966-present)
Kids: Eleanor, Bradley
Education: College of William and Mary, BA, History, 1965; Indiana University, MA, History, 1966; Georgetown University, Ph.D., Russian and Soviet History, 1974
Soldier: US Air Force, 2nd Lt
At the time of his appointment, Gates was the youngest person to take over the post of CIA director. He is also the only CIA director to have been promoted from an entry-level position to lead the agency.
Gates has had fewer than eight US presidents, from Lyndon B. Johnson to Barack Obama, except for Bill Clinton.
1966 – He is hired as a CIA analyst.
1971 – As an intelligence analyst specializing in Soviet affairs, Gates is assigned to the CIA’s support staff for the initial strategic arms reduction negotiations between the United States and the Soviet Union.
1974-1979 – Member of the National Security Council staff.
January 1980 – He is assigned as a national intelligence officer for the Soviet Union’s CIA and executive assistant to Director Stansfield Turner.
January 1981 – William Casey becomes executive assistant to the new CIA director. Gates is also director of the Office of Policy and Plans and chairman of the Executive Career Service.
January 1982 – He is promoted to deputy director of intelligence and oversees the agency’s analytical arm.
September 1983 – He is appointed president of the National Intelligence Council.
April 18, 1986 – He is promoted to Deputy Director of Central Intelligence.
December 1986-March 1987 – When Casey underwent surgery for a brain tumor, he is acting director.
January 29, 1987 – Casey is stepping down as director of the CIA.
February 2, 1987 – US President Ronald Reagan has nominated Gates to succeed Casey.
March 2, 1987 – Gates withdraws his nomination as he continues to be questioned about his involvement in the Iran-Contra affair. He continues as Deputy Director of William H. Webster.
January 1989 – National Security Adviser Brent Scowcroft has named Gates as his replacement.
May 14, 1991 – US President George HW Bush appointed Gates to replace Webster as CIA Director.
November 5, 1991 – The Senate confirms Gates’ nomination, 64-31.
November 6, 1991 – Gates is sworn in as the nation’s 15th director of Central Intelligence.
January 20, 1993 – He has resigned as director of the CIA.
1996 – His memoir, “From the Shadows: The Ultimate Insider’s Story of Five Presidents and How They Won the Cold War,” has been published.
December 1996 – At the request of President Clinton’s administration, Gates chairs an independent panel examining the likelihood of missile threats to North America over the next 15 years.
1999-2001 – George Bush is the Interim Dean of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University.
August 1, 2002 – December 16, 2006 – He is the president of Texas A&M University.
February 2005 – US President George W. Bush offers the position of Director of National Intelligence, but turns it down.
November 8, 2006 – President Bush has nominated Donald Rumsfeld to be the new Secretary of Defense.
December 6, 2006 – The Senate confirms Gates, 95-2.
December 18, 2006 – He is sworn in as the 22nd Secretary of Defense.
December 1, 2008 – President-elect Obama has announced that Gates will remain as defense secretary for at least the first year of Obama’s presidency.
June 30, 2011 – He retires from the position of Secretary of Defense, and will be replaced by Leon Panetta. President Obama awarded Gates the Medal of Freedom at his retirement ceremony.
February 3, 2012 – Gates has been invested as the 24th chancellor of the College of William and Mary.
2012-present – Principal of the consulting firm Rice, Hadley, Gates & Manuel LLC, along with founding members Condoleezza Rice, Stephen Hadley and Anja Manuel.
October 30, 2013 – The Boy Scouts of America announced that Gates has been appointed to a two-year term as head of the organization.
2014 – Gates’ book, “Duty: Memoirs of a Secretary at War,” is published.
May 22, 2014 – May 26, 2016 – Gates is the national president of the Boy Scouts of America.
May 21, 2015 – Citing social, judicial and political changes, Gates calls on the Boy Scouts of America to end its ban on gay adult leaders.
June 14, 2020 – Gates is urging Army bases to name their 10 facilities after Confederate leaders, saying the military symbols represent the “dark side of history.” His suggestion comes days after President Donald Trump tweeted that he would not consider renaming parts of “America’s Great Heritage.”
June 16, 2020 – His book, “Exercise of Power: American Failures, Successes, and a New Path Forward in the Post-Cold War World,” has been published.