Richard Holbrooke

Born Apr 24, 1941

Richard Charles Albert Holbrooke was an American diplomat, magazine editor, author, professor, Peace Corps official, and investment banker. He was the only person to have held the position of Assistant Secretary of State for two different regions of the world (Asia from 1977 to 1981 and Europe from 1994 to 1996). From 1993 to 1994, he was U.S. Ambassador to Germany.… Read More

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1941 Birth Holbrooke was born on April 24, 1941, in New York City, to Dan Holbrooke, a doctor, and Trudi Kearl (née Moos), a potter; brother, Andrew, survives him. … Read More


1962 21 Years Old 1 More Event
After Scarsdale High School, Holbrooke earned a Bachelor of Arts from Brown University in 1962, attending on a full-tuition scholarship.
1964 23 Years Old Holbrooke was married three times. His first wife was Larrine Sullivan, whom he married in 1964; Holbrooke and Sullivan divorced.
1968 27 Years Old Following his time in the White House, Holbrooke served as a special assistant to Under Secretaries of State (then the number-two position in the State Department) Nicholas Katzenbach and Elliot Richardson. In 1968, Holbrooke was asked to be part of the American delegation to the 1968 Paris peace talks, which was led by former New York Governor Averell Harriman and Deputy Secretary of Defense Cyrus Vance. … Read More
1970 29 Years Old 1 More Event
He was later a fellow at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University, leaving in 1970.


1972 31 Years Old After two years, he left the Foreign Service to become the Managing Editor of the magazine Foreign Policy from 1972–1976. … Read More
1976 35 Years Old In the summer of 1976, Holbrooke left Foreign Policy to serve as campaign coordinator for national security affairs to Governor Jimmy Carter (D-GA) in his bid for the White House. … Read More
He later married Blythe Babyak, a reporter for MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour, on January 1, 1977; they divorced.


1981 40 Years Old In January 1981, Holbrooke left government and became both senior advisor to Lehman Brothers and vice president of Public Strategies, a consulting firm he formed with James A. Johnson, a former top aide to Walter Mondale.
1985 44 Years Old From 1985 until 1993, Holbrooke served as managing director of Lehman Brothers.
1988 47 Years Old He was a top policy adviser to then-Senator Al Gore (D-TN) during his 1988 campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination. … Read More


1991 - 1993 4 More Events
Holbrooke served in Germany during a dramatic moment: only a few years after German reunification, he helped shape U.S. relations with a new Germany. A highlight of his tenure was President Bill Clinton’s visit to Berlin in July 1994, when thousands of Germans crammed the streets to welcome the American leader. … Read More
1995 54 Years Old 1 More Event
In Paris in December 1995, he was the chief architect of the Dayton Peace Accords which ended a three-and-a-half-year-long war in Bosnia.
1996 55 Years Old 1 More Event
…  Holbrooke was a leading contender to succeed the retiring Warren Christopher as Secretary of State but was passed over in 1996 as President Bill Clinton chose Madeleine Albright instead. … Read More
1997 56 Years Old In 1997, Holbrooke became a special envoy to Cyprus and the Balkans on a pro-bono basis as a private citizen.
1998 57 Years Old 1 More Event
During 1998 and 1999, in his capacity as special presidential envoy, Holbrooke worked to end the conflict between the armed forces of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA), who were fighting for an independent Kosovo in the Kosovo War. … Read More
1999 58 Years Old 1 More Event
In March 1999 he traveled to Belgrade to deliver the final ultimatum to Yugoslav president Slobodan Milošević before the NATO attack began.
As negotiations reached a critical phase in the fall of 2000, Holbrooke bridged a gap between what the US was legally permitted to pay and the amounts the rest of the UN membership were willing to shoulder by securing an unprecedented contribution by billionaire Ted Turner, founder of the UN Foundation. … Read More


2001 - 2007 4 More Events
2008 67 Years Old 1 More Event
In June 2008, Conde Nast Portfolio reported that Holbrooke and his son allegedly got multiple below-rate loans at Countrywide Financial because the corporation considered them "FOA's"—"Friends of Angelo" (Countrywide Chief Executive Angelo Mozilo). … Read More
2009 68 Years Old 1 More Event
In January 2009, Holbrooke was appointed as a special adviser on Pakistan and Afghanistan, working under President Barack Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
He served until he died from complications of an aortic dissection on December 13, 2010. … Read More
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