In his role as Secretary of State, Powell has played a pivotal role in advising the President how to react in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks.
Throughout his 35-year military career, he has been accustomed to working in high-stress situations, having been chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff from 1989 to 1993 during 28 crises, including Operation Desert Storm in the Gulf War. He had been Secretary of State for only eight months when he faced the enormous challenge facing the nation arising out of the terrorist actions of September 11th.
In his 1995 autobiography My American Journey, Jamaica-born Powell refers to his Scots-Irish ancestry. ♦