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Dean Rusk
Dean Rusk.jpg
54th United States Secretary of State
In office
January 21, 1961 – January 20, 1969
President John F. Kennedy
Lyndon B. Johnson
Preceded by Christian A. Herter
Succeeded by William P. Rogers
2nd Assistant Secretary of State for Far Eastern Affairs
In office
March 28, 1950 – December 9, 1951
President Harry S. Truman
Preceded by William Walton Butterworth
Succeeded by John Moore Allison
1st Assistant Secretary of State for International Organization Affairs
In office
February 8, 1949 – May 26, 1949
President Harry S. Truman
Preceded by Post created
Succeeded by John D. Hickerson
Personal details
David Dean Rusk

(1909-02-09)February 9, 1909
Cherokee County, Georgia, U.S.
Died December 20, 1994(1994-12-20) (aged 85)
Athens, Georgia, U.S.
Resting place Oconee Hill Cemetery in Athens, Georgia, U.S.
Political party Democratic
Virginia Foisie Rusk
(m. 1937; his death 1994)
  • David Rusk
  • Richard Rusk
  • Peggy Rusk Smith
Education Davidson College
Oxford University
UC Berkeley School of Law
Profession Professor, Soldier, Politician
Awards Legion of Merit
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Branch/service  United States Army
Rank US-O6 insignia.svg Colonel
Battles/wars World War II

David Dean Rusk (February 9, 1909 – December 20, 1994) was an American politician. He served as the United States Secretary of State from 1961 to 1969 under presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson. Rusk is the second-longest serving U.S. Secretary of State of all time, behind only Cordell Hull and tied with William H. Seward.

As Secretary of State he believed in the use of military action to combat communism. On March 24, 1961, Rusk released a brief statement saying his delegation was to travel to Bangkok and the SEATO nations' responsibility should be considered if peace settlements are not realized.

In 1964, Rusk said the US would not be pushed out of the Gulf of Tonkin and that the prevention of it becoming a "communist lake" would be assured by the continued presence of American forces there.

During his later years, Rusk showed his support of Richard Nixon and his handling of the Cold War.

Rusk died of heart failure in Athens, Georgia on December 20, 1994, at the age of 85.

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