The Honorable John Warner, former U.S. Senator of Virginia
2016 Public Service Champion of the Chesapeake
John Warner was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1978 and served five consecutive terms, establishing a record as the second-longest serving U.S. Senator in Virginia’s history and was instrumental in passing legislation to establish the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail in 2006.
He served on the Senate Armed Services Committee, holding positions as Chairman or ranking member for his last 17 years. During his tenure, he served on other committees, including Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, Intelligence (as Vice Chairman for several years), Commerce, Environment and Public Works, and Rules (as Chairman for several years).
At age 17, he volunteered for active military duty as an enlisted sailor in the final years of World War II from 1945 to 1946; several years later he enlisted in the U.S. Marines and served as a commissioned officer, First Lieutenant, in Korea from 1950 to 1952.
He graduated from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1953 and clerked for Judge E. Barrett Prettyman, U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. From 1955 to 1960, he was an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia. He joined Hogan & Hartson (now Hogan Lovells) as an associate in 1961, became a partner in 1964, departed in 1968 for a career in public service, and rejoined in 2009.
In 1969 he was nominated by President Richard Nixon, and confirmed by the Senate, as Under Secretary, and later as Secretary, of the U.S. Navy, serving from 1969 to 1974, during the Vietnam War.