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Naval History and Heritage Command

Anderson, Robert B.
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Anderson, Robert B.

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(1910-1989). Secretary of the Navy, 1953-1954

Robert B. Anderson

51st Secretary of the Navy, 4 February 1953 - 3 May 1954


Robert Bernerd Anderson was born in Burleson, Texas, on 4 June 1910. He was a high school teacher prior to entering the University of Texas Law School, from which he graduated in 1932. He thereafter engaged in political, governmental, law and business activities in the state of Texas. During World War II, he was an adviser to the Secretary of War.


In February 1953, Mr. Anderson became the new Eisenhower administration's first Secretary of the Navy. During his time as Navy Secretary, he ended the last formal vestiges of racial segregation in the Navy and advocated the force levels and technological advances necessary to maintain a flexible defense strategy. In May 1954, Mr. Anderson left his Navy post to become Deputy Secretary of Defense. From 1957 to 1961, he served as President Eisenhower's Secretary of the Treasury. After leaving office, he was active in business, investment and banking affairs, and, during the 1960s, carried out diplomatic missions on behalf of President Johnson. Robert B. Anderson died in New York City on 14 August 1989.


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