South Euclid native Stephen Hadley for Defense Secretary? Five things to know
Former National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley – pictured here with former president Geoge W. Bush and former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, is reportedly under consideration by Donald Trump to be the next Secretary of Defense. (Pablo Martinez Monsivais, Associated Press )
By Sabrina Eaton, cleveland.com
WASHINGTON, D. C. – Former National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley – a South Euclid native – has repeatedly been listed among the candidates Donald Trump is considering for Defense Secretary. Others on that list include Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions and former Michigan congressman Mike Rogers.
Since Hadley’s last White House boss, George W. Bush, left office, he’s kept busy as a partner in an international strategic consulting firm he heads with former Bush Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice, and Robert Gates, who served as Defense Secretary under Bush and President Barack Obama. Hadley also chairs the United States Institute for Peace board of directors.
Here are five things to know about him:
He grew up in South Euclid:
Hadley was the second of three children born to South Euclid electrical engineer Robert Hadley, and his wife, Suzanne, who stayed home with their kids. His older brother is an orthopedic surgeon and his younger sister trained as a nurse. He played on Brush’s varsity tennis team, and old friends recall that he regularly creamed them at table tennis.
His interest in government was piqued at Brush High School:
His interest in government emerged when he read Allen Drury’s 1960 Pulitzer Prize-winning political thriller, Advise and Consent, during his high school years. The novel chronicles intrigue surrounding the Senate confirmation of a controversial secretary of state nominee. Fascinated by its portrayal of life in Washington, Hadley gravitated toward student government. He participated in Ohio’s Boys State government education program and became student council president at Charles F. Brush High School. He was valedictorian of its class of 1965.
He went to Yale Law School with Bill and Hillary Clinton:
After graduating magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Cornell University in 1969, Hadley enrolled in Yale Law School, where he befriended Hillary Clinton. In a past Plain Dealer interview, he said he was cordial with Clinton but didn’t talk much with her while he was National Security Adviser and she was a Democratic U.S. Senator from New York.
After Yale, Hadley worked as an analyst for the comptroller of the Department of Defense during the waning days of the Nixon administration, and joined the National Security Council under President Ford. When George H.W. Bush was president, he served as Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy. Between GOP presidential administrations, he was a partner in the Washington, D.C., law firm of Shea & Gardner and a principal in The Scowcroft Group Inc., an international consulting firm headed by former national security adviser Brent Scowcroft.
ANALYSIS | Stephen Hadley: The man who might run the Pentagon if Donald Trump wins https://t.co/jK02YUMbAn
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He relishes keeping a low-profile:
Rice told The Plain Dealer that Hadley hates calling attention to himself. She also said she was impressed by his close relationship with his daughters, the only people whose phone calls he’d take faster than calls from President Bush. According to Rice, he’s an an excellent singer who is a standby at her yearly Christmas caroling parties, and he enjoys accompanying her to operas and classical music concerts at The Kennedy Center.
He advocates a degree of foreign policy continuity between administrations:
Last month, Hadley told told a think tank forum that he believes there should be a degree of foreign policy continuity between presidents because every new administration must build on what went before.
“Remember, the genius of our system is that a president who is elected comes in with political appointees and they then have to deal with the professional civil service military intelligence,” he said. “It is that intermediation of political direction coming out of an election, working and meshing with the experience and expertise of the permanent government, that actually leads to better outcomes for our country. You don’t want to disrupt that.”