Legion of Merit (2) Soldier's Medal Bronze Star Purple Heart
Colin Luther Powell (born April 5, 1937) is an American statesman and a former four-star general in the United States Army. He was the 65th United States Secretary of State (2001-2005), serving under President George W. Bush. He was the first African American appointed to that position. During his military career, Powell also served as National Security Advisor (1987–1989), as Commander-in-Chief, U.S. Army Forces Command (1989) and as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (1989–1993), holding the latter position during the Gulf War. He was the first, and so far the only, African American to serve on the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Colin Luther Powell was born on April 5, 1937 in Harlem, a neighborhood in the New York City borough of Manhattan to Jamaican immigrant parents Luther Theophilus Powell and Maud Arial McKoy and was raised in the South Bronx. He also has Scottish and Irish ancestry. Powell attended Morris High School, a former public school in The Bronx, from which he graduated in 1954. While at school, he worked a local baby furniture store where he picked up Yiddish from the shopkeepers and some of the customers. He earned a bachelor's degree in geology from City College of New York, attaining a C average, according to his 2006 graduation address at Marymount University. He earned an MBA from The George Washington University, after his second tour in Vietnam in 1971.