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February, 1988, Vol. 111, No. 2
The careers of 18 Labor SecretariesJonathan Grossman
On March 4, 1913, Congress created "an executive department in the Government to be called the Department of Labor, with a Secretary of Labor, who shall be the head thereof, to be appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate.... In the 75 years since then, there have been 19 Secretaries from varied backgrounds and with different philosophies regarding the Department. The first three Secretaries were labor leaders. Six came from the ranks of the trade union movement. Others have been lawyers, professors, politicians, businessmen, and personnel directors.
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