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William D. Ford

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

William David Ford
William D. Ford.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Michigan's 13th district
In office
January 3, 1993 – January 3, 1995
Preceded byBarbara-Rose Collins
Succeeded byLynn Rivers
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Michigan's 15th district
In office
January 3, 1965 – January 3, 1993
Preceded byJohn Dingell, Jr.
Succeeded byBarbara-Rose Collins
Member of the Michigan Senate
from the 21st district
In office
Personal details
Born(1927-08-06)August 6, 1927
Detroit, Michigan
DiedAugust 14, 2004(2004-08-14) (aged 77)
Ypsilanti Township, Michigan
Nationality United States
Political partyDemocratic
Residence(s)Ypsilanti Township, Michigan
Alma materUniversity of Denver

William David Ford (August 6, 1927 – August 14, 2004) was a U.S. Representative from Michigan and namesake of the Federal Direct Student Loan Program. Ford was known for his support of workers and educational opportunity. Among his significant legislative accomplishments were authoring the Workers Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (the "Plant Closing Act") and the Middle Income Student Assistance Act, and his key role in passing the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993. In 1994, the Federal Direct Student Loan Program was named in his honor.[1][2]

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Ford was born in Detroit and attended Henry Ford Trade School, Melvindale High School, Nebraska State Teachers College, and Wayne State University. His father, a Scottish immigrant, was an autoworker who was killed on the job, an incident that influenced Ford's political views.[1]

He interrupted his studies to serve in the United States Navy during World War II, 1944–1946. He also served in the United States Air Force Reserve from 1950 to 1958.

After the war, he received a B.A. from the University of Denver in 1949, and a J.D. from that university's College of Law in 1951. He was admitted to the bar in 1951 and practiced law in Taylor, Michigan. He was justice of the peace for Taylor Township, 1955–1957; city attorney for Melvindale, 1957–1959; and attorney for Taylor Township, 1957–1964.

He was a delegate to the Michigan constitutional convention, 1961–1962, which drafted the state constitution adopted in 1963. He was a member of the Michigan State Senate, 1962–1964; member and officer of Michigan's Sixteenth District Democratic Organization, 1952–1964; delegate to Michigan Democratic conventions, 1952–1970, and to the Democratic National Convention in 1968. He was elected as a Democrat to the United States House of Representatives for the 89th and the fourteen succeeding Congresses, serving from January 3, 1965 to January 3, 1995.

He was chairman of the U.S. House Committee on Post Office and Civil Service in the 97th through 101st Congresses, and of the Committee on Education and Labor in the 102nd and 103rd Congresses. He did not seek re-election in the 1994 election.

Ford died in 2004 at his home in Ypsilanti Township, Michigan of complications from a stroke and was buried at Arlington National Cemetery.

Despite their shared surname and home state, William D. Ford was not related to either the Henry Ford family or U.S. president Gerald Ford.[1]


  1. ^ a b c Schudel, Matt (2004-08-15). "Rep. William D. Ford Of Michigan Dies at 77". Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 2020-01-14.
  2. ^ "William D. Ford, 77; Congressman Dedicated to Workplace Safety". Los Angeles Times. 2004-08-16. Retrieved 2020-01-14.

External links

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Michigan's 15th congressional district

Succeeded by
Preceded by Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Michigan's 13th congressional district

Succeeded by
Political offices
Preceded by Chairman of House Post Office and Civil Service Committee
Succeeded by
Bill Clay
Preceded by Chairman of House Education and Labor Committee
Succeeded by
This page was last edited on 19 May 2022, at 19:49
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