Colin Luther Powell is among the most well-known and well-respected politicians of the United States, who is also a general with four stars and a highly experienced diplomat. He was born in the South Bronx of New York City in 1937, and he was raised by his immigrant Jamaican parents (“General Colin L. Powell, USA”). He was educated at various public schools in NYC and earned his geology bachelor’s degree from the City College of New York (“General Colin L. Powell, USA”).
One of his most prominent positions and achievements is the fact that he was the first African-American Secretary of State. His five positions he held in and out of the military are 65th United States Secretary of State, Joint Chiefs of Staff, National Security Advisor, senior military assistant to Secretary of Defense, and assistant chief of staff of operations for the 23rd Infantry Division.
One of Colin Powell’s first and major positions during his military years was the fact that he was assigned as assistant chief of staff of operations for the 23rd Infantry Division. The main accomplishment during this moment is hallmarked by the fact that he returned to Vietnam as a major, who is a field grade military officer rank, who is also higher than a captain. During the Vietnam War as an assistant and major, he saved and rescued three of his fellow soldiers as well as Major General after surviving a helicopter crash (“General Colin L. Powell, USA”). He exhibited his first signs of bravery and courage, for which he was awarded accordingly.
As a senior military assistant to the Secretary of Defense, he jumpstarted his political career by transitioning from a military one. He was an assistant to the Secretary of Defense, where he played a critical role in navigating the airstrikes in Libya and the Grenada invasion (“General Colin L. Powell, USA”). It was during the given position when he proved that he is an outstanding strategist and tactician outside the military, which led to a strong climb on his career ladder.
His next position was manifested in him becoming 16th National Security Advisor of the United States, which took place after he was assigned as a United States Deputy National Security Advisor, where he proved himself as a competent advisor in less than a year (“General Colin L. Powell, USA”). It was during this time when he received his four-star general status under the POTUS George Bush in 1989.
In 1989, Colin Powell was appointed as 12th Joint Chiefs of Staff under both Bill Clinton and George Bush. It can be considered as the Department of Defense’s highest military position. His accomplishment can be seen in his outstanding performance because Colin Powell was always reluctant to utilize military approaches. During this time, he mainly made major attempts to reach the possible solution through containment and diplomatic efforts.
His highest achievement is that he was appointed as first African-American and 65th United States Secretary of State. In this position, he accomplished a wide range of successful operations in regards to management and solved many crises. He established the so-called Powell doctrine, where he only deployed military interventions if they were in the interests of the United States and other diplomatic approaches failed.
In conclusion, Colin Powell is a person with an array of high-level accomplishments, which span and persist consistently across his both military and political careers. His five most prominent positions include 65th United States Secretary of State, Joint Chiefs of Staff, National Security Advisor, senior military assistant to Secretary of Defense, and assistant chief of staff of operations for the 23rd Infantry Division.
“General Colin L. Powell, USA.” Academy of Achievement, 2020. Web.