Miller Center

American President

A Reference Resource

Louis Wade Sullivan (1989–1993): Secretary of Health and Human Services

Louis Wade Sullivan was born in Atlanta, Georgia, in 1933. He received his bachelor's degree from Morehouse College (1954) and earned his medical degree from Boston University (1958).

Sullivan was a fellow at Massachusetts General Hospital (1960-1961) and at the Thorndike Memorial Research Laboratories, associated with Harvard Medical School and Boston City Hospital, from 1961 to 1964. While at Harvard Medical School, Sullivan served as an instructor in medicine (1963-1964); he was also an assistant professor of medicine at Seton Hall College (1964-1966).

From 1966 to 1975, Sullivan was professor of medicine at Boston University of Medicine. He returned to Morehouse College as professor of biology and medicine in 1975 and became president of the Morehouse School of Medicine in 1985.

President Bush appointed him secretary of health and human services in 1989, a post Sullivan held until 1993.