Chuck Hagel

From Ballotpedia
Revision as of 14:05, 31 October 2013 by PhilH (Talk | contribs)

Jump to: navigation, search
Chuck Hagel
Chuck Hagel.jpg
Secretary of Defense
In office
February 27, 2013-Present
Years in position 2
Elections and appointments
NominatedJanuary 7, 2013
ConfirmedFebruary 26, 2013
AppointedFebruary 27, 2013
Appointed byBarack Obama
Prior offices
U.S. Senator from Nebraska
Deputy Administrator for the Veterans Administration
High schoolSt. Bonaventure High School
Bachelor'sUniversity of Nebraska at Omaha
Military service
Service/branchU.S. Army, Sargeant
Years of service1967-1968
CitationsVietnamese Cross of Gallantry, Purple Heart (x2), the Army Commendation Medal and the Combat Infantryman Badge
Date of birthOctober 4, 1946
Place of birthNorth Platte, Nebraska
ReligionRoman Catholic
Office website
Charles Timothy Hagel (b. October 4, 1946, in North Platte, Nebraska) is the current United States Secretary of Defense. Hagel was confirmed by the Senate on February 26, 2013.[1] He is the first enlisted combat veteran to hold the position of Secretary of Defense.[2]

Hagel previously served as Deputy Administrator of the Veterans Administration under the Reagan administration and was a member of the U.S. Senate representing Nebraska from 1996 to 2009.[3]


Hagel attended St. Bonaventure High School in Nebraska. After high school, he enrolled at the Brown Institute for Radio and Television in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in 1966.[4] He dropped out of school to serve in the army during the Vietnam War where he fought alongside his brother, Tom, in 1968.[3] He and Tom ended up saving each others' lives on different occasions and earned five Purple Hearts between them.[1] Following his term of service in the army, Hagel graduated from the University of Nebraska at Omaha.

He continued his public service by joining Representative John McCollister's staff until becoming a lobbyist for Firestone Tire and Rubber Company in 1977.[1] President Reagan then appointed Hagel to the position of deputy administrator for the Veterans Administration, a position he used to help those who had been affected by Agent Orange in Vietnam.[3] Following his term in 1982, he worked as president and director of a number of private sector businesses including Vanguard Cellular Systems, Inc. until his 1996 election to the United States Senate.[1] After his second term, Hagel retired and taught national governance at Georgetown University before accepting President Obama's nomination to be secretary of defense.[1]


Below is an abbreviated outline of Hagel's academic, professional and political career:[1] [3][4]

  • 1966-1967: Attended Brown Institute for Radio and Television
  • 1967-1969: Served with the U.S. Army in Vietnam
  • 1971: Graduated from University of Nebraska at Omaha
  • 1971-1977: Served on the staff of Nebraska Representative John McCollister
  • 1977-1980: Lobbyist for Firestone Tire and Rubber Company
  • 1981-1982: Appointed to Deputy Administrator for the Veterans Administrations
  • 1982-1985: President and Co-founder of Collins, Hagel and Clarke, Inc.
  • 1982: Deputy Commissioner General for the World's Fair, Knoxville, TN
  • 1984-1987: Director and Executive Vice President of Vanguard Cellular Systems, Inc.
  • 1987-1990: President and CEO of World United Service Organizations
  • 1990-1992: President and CEO of Private Sector Council of Washington, D.C.
  • 1992-1996: President of McCarthy and Co.
  • 1997-2009: United States Senator from Nebraska
  • 2009-2013: Professor of National Governance in the School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University
  • 2013-Present: United States Secretary of Defense

Confirmation vote

Chuck Hagel confirmation vote, February 26, 2013
Party Votes for Approveda Votes against Defeatedd Total votes
Democratic Party Democrats 52 0 52
Republican Party Republicans 4 41 45
Independent Independents 2 0 2
Total Votes 58 41 99



On November 5, 2002, Chuck Hagel won re-election to the United States Senate. He defeated Charlie A. Matulka (D), Phil Chase (I) and John J. Graziano (L) in the general election.[6]

U.S. Senate, Nebraska General Election, 2002
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngChuck Hagel incumbent 82.8% 397,438
     Democratic Charlie A. Matulka 14.6% 70,290
     Independent Phil Chase 1.1% 5,066
     Libertarian John J. Graziano 1.5% 7,423
Total Votes 480,217


On November 5, 1996, Chuck Hagel won election to the United States Senate. He defeated Ben Nelson (D) in the general election.[7]

U.S. Senate, Nebraska General Election, 1996
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngChuck Hagel 57.4% 379,933
     Democratic Ben Nelson 42.6% 281,904
Total Votes 661,837


Military sexual assault cases

On August 15, 2013, Secretary Hagel announced sweeping reforms to the handling of sexual assault accusations in the U.S. military. Per a Pentagon survey, sexual assault cases rose to 26,000 in 2012 from 19,000 in 2010.[8] The Department felt pressure from President Obama to enact the reforms, which include improved legal support for victims, transfers for accused to eliminate future contact and required follow-up actions throughout the chain of command.[8][9] Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a member of the armed services committee stated that while it is a step in the right direction, all sexual assault cases in the military should be judged by an independent body.[8]


Hagel and his wife, Lilibet, have two children.[4]

Recent news

This section displays the most recent stories in a Google news search for the term Chuck + Hagel + Secretary + Defense

All stories may not be relevant to this page due to the nature of the search engine.

  • Loading...

External links


Political offices
Preceded by
Leon Panetta
U.S. Secretary of Defense
Succeeded by
Preceded by
James Exon
U.S. Senate - Nebraska
Succeeded by
Mike Johanns