Elliot Lee Richardson (July 20, 1920 – December 31, 1999) was an American lawyer and politician who was a member of the cabinet of Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford. As U.S. Attorney General, he was a prominent figure in the Watergate Scandal, and resigned rather than obey President Nixon's order to fire special prosecutor Archibald Cox.
Richardson served as Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare from 1970 to 1973, Secretary of Defense from January to May 1973, Attorney General from May to October 1973, and Secretary of Commerce from 1976 to 1977. That makes him one of only two individuals to have held four Cabinet positions within the United States government (the other such individual being George Shultz).
Richardson was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the son of Clara Lee (née Shattuck) and Edward Peirson Richardson, a doctor and professor at Harvard Medical School. He was a Boston Brahmin, descended from the earliest Puritan settlers in New England...
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