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Former United States Attorney General Edwin Meese III


November 26, 2007 12:30pm - 2:00pm


Edwin Meese III holds the Ronald Reagan Chair in Public Policy at The Heritage Foundation. He served as the 75th Attorney General of the United States from February 1985 to August 1988. As the nation's chief law enforcement officer, he directed the Justice Department and led international efforts to combat terrorism, drug trafficking and organized crime. In 1985, he received the Government Executive magazine's annual award for excellence in management.

From January 1981 to February 1985, Mr. Meese held the position of Counsellor to the President – the senior position on the White House Staff – where he functioned as President Reagan's chief policy adviser. As Attorney General and as Counsellor, Mr. Meese was a member of Reagan's Cabinet and the National Security Council. He served as chairman of the Domestic Policy Council and of the National Drug Policy Board.

From 1977 to 1981, Mr. Meese was a Professor of Law at the University of San Diego, where he also was Director of the Center for Criminal Justice Policy and Management.

In addition to his background as a lawyer, educator and public official, Mr. Meese has been a business executive in the aerospace and transportation industry, serving as Vice President for administration of Rohr Industries, Inc. in Chula Vista, California. He left Rohr to return to the practice of law, engaging in corporate and general legal work in San Diego County.

He is the author or co-author of three books: Leadership, Ethics and Policing, published by Prentice Hall in 2004; co-editor of Making America Safer, published in 1997 by Heritage; and the author of With Reagan: The Inside Story, which Regnery Gateway published in June 1992.

Edwin Meese III was born Dec. 2, 1931, to Edwin Jr. and Leone Meese in Oakland, Calif. He graduated from Yale University in 1953 and holds a law degree from the University of California-Berkeley. He is a retired Colonel in the Army Reserve and remains active in numerous civic and educational organizations.

Mr. Meese also is a Distinguished Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution. In addition, he lectures, writes, and consults throughout the United States on a variety of subjects.

Meese and his wife, Ursula, have two grown children. They live in McLean, Virginia.