Nelson A. Rockefeller

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Nelson Aldrich Rockefeller (1908-1979) wiki "was a businessman, politician, statesman, art collector, and philanthropist. He began his public life as an officer in a number of family-related enterprises, including Rockefeller Center, Creole Oil (the Venezuelan subsidiary of Standard Oil), and the Museum of Modern Art; but he soon began to establish new organizations to fulfill his personal interests. In 1940 he and his siblings founded their own philanthropic foundation, the Rockefeller Brothers Fund; for work in Latin America, Rockefeller established the American International Association for Economic Development (1946) and the International Basic Economy Corporation (1947); and in 1954 he established the Museum of Primitive Art in New York City.

"Rockefeller's service in government began in 1933 as a member of the Westchester County Board of Health; he moved onto the national and international scene in 1940 as the Coordinator of the Office of Inter-American Affairs under President Franklin D. Roosevelt. He received subsequent presidential appointments from Harry Truman, Dwight D. Eisenhower, and Richard M. Nixon, working on government reorganization, public policy, and foreign affairs.

"In the 1950s and 1960s Rockefeller sought elective office himself. Beginning in 1958, he won election to four consecutive terms as governor of New York State, where, as a progressive Republican, he vastly increased the state's role in education, environmental protection, transportation, housing, welfare, and the arts. His candidacies for the Republican nomination for president in 1960, 1964, and 1968 were not successful. He resigned as governor in 1973 and the next year was nominated as vice president of the United States, serving under President Gerald Ford (1974-1977)." [1]

He died of a heart attack on January 26, 1979.


The establishment of the OIAA and the role of Nelson Rockefeller are discussed in great detail by:

  • Claude Curtis Erb, "Nelson Rockefeller and United States-Latin American Relations, 1940-1945," Ph.D. Thesis, Clark University, 1982.
  • Cary Reich, The Life of Nelson A Rockefeller. Worlds to Conquer, 1908-1958 (New York: Doubleday, 1996), pp. 165-261.


His brother is David Rockefeller, and his sister is Abby Rockefeller Mauze .

His children are Nelson A. Rockefeller, Jr., Mark Rockefeller, Rodman Rockefeller, Anne Rockefeller, Steven C. Rockefeller, Mary Rockefeller, and Michael Rockefeller.

One of his grandsons is Stuart Rockefeller.

Role in the Green Revolution

In 1941, Rockefeller was in the meetings between Henry A. Wallace and executives of the Rockefeller Foundation that ultimately gave birth to the Green Revolution. Subsequently, he played a role in the Green Revolution once again when, in his work as the Coordinator of the Office of Inter-American Affairs, he "articulated the position that the United States, meaning both public and private sectors, had to be concerned about the welfare of Latin American people if American business was to prosper and American military security was to be maintained. More significantly, however, he served as a catalyst for what eventually became the Point Four program,"[2] the policy that led the way to U.S. involvement in the Green Revolution. The idea did not originate directly from Rockefeller, but rather from Ben Hardy, who had previously worked under Rockefeller at the Office of Inter-American Affairs but now worked for the State Department. He remained in contact with Rockefeller and "was much interested in the idealism he saw in the AIA," the American International Association for Economic and Social Development founded by Rockefeller to "invest private capital in Latin America in profit-making ventures," and to then funnel the profits "into a foundation that would promote programs of technical assistance and social betterment in Latin America."

Critical Books


  • Cary Reich, The Life of Nelson A. Rockefeller: Worlds to Conquer 1908-1958 (New York: Doubleday, 1996).


  • Robert Scheer, "Nelson Rockefeller Takes Care of Everybody", PlayBoy, October 1975. (Also can be found here "Thinking Tuna Fish and Talking Death: Essays on the Pornography of Power" (New York, Hill and Wang, 1988).)
  • Robert Fitch, "Nelson Rockefeller: An Anti-Obituary", Monthly Review, June 1979, p. 13.

External links

Resources and articles

Related Sourcewatch articles


  1. Nelson A. Rockefeller, Council on Foreign Relations, accessed April 16, 2010.
  2. John H. Perkins, Geopolitics and the Green Revolution: Wheat, Genes, and the Cold War, Oxford University Press, New York, 1997, p. 148-149.

External Articles