Potomac Fever

A Memoir of Politics and Public Service
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Binding:Hardback
Published:July 15, 2011

After a highly successful career in investment banking, J. William Middendorf became a leader of Senator Barry Goldwater's presidential campaign and the Republican National Committee, and then served in a series of challenging public service appointments: Ambassador to The Netherlands, Secretary of the Navy, Ambassador to the Organization of American States, and Ambassador to the European Community. A dozen years out of Harvard, investment banker Bill Middendorf’s salary hit $250,000 a year; another dozen years, with his own firm and a seat on the New York Stock Exchange, his income was well into seven figures. But he was restive. “I had learned how to make money,” he writes. “I wanted to learn how to make a difference.” Thus, he became actively involved in politics, first at the local level and then with the presidential campaign of Senator Barry Goldwater (1964) and as treasurer of the Republican National Committee (1964-1968). There followed a series of challenging public service appointments: ambassador to The Netherlands, under secretary and secretary of the Navy, ambassador to the Organization of American States and ambassador to the European Community.

Middendorf is a story-teller, and has many tales to share --- from his World War II Navy service, to his first job wearing a string of pearls in a bank vault, on to a failed effort to bring a U.S.-style constitution to post-Soviet Russia. Tales of villains and heroes, tales of narrow legislative victories on vital programs, tales of behind-the-scenes efforts to forestall war in the Falklands and to counter growing Communist control of the island of Grenada.

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Product Details
  • Hardback : 256 pages
  • Publisher: Naval Institute Press (July 15, 2011)
  • ISBN-10: 1591145376
  • ISBN-13: 9781591145370
  • Product Dimensions: 6 X 9 in
  • Shipping Weight: 0 lb

John William Middendorf II served in the Nixon, Ford, and Reagan administrations as Secretary of the Navy, Ambassador to The Netherlands, U.S. Representative to the Organization of American States, and U.S. Representative to the European Community. He is a founding member, with William F. Buckley Jr., of the American Conservative Union and a board member of the Heritage Foundation

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