Miller Center

American President

A Reference Resource

William B. Saxbe (1974–1975): Attorney General

William Bart Saxbe was born June 24, 1916, in Mechanicsburg, Ohio. He earned an A.B. (1940) and an LL.B. (1948) from Ohio State University. He served the U.S. Army from 1940 to 1945 and from 1951 to 1952. Saxbe's political career began in the Ohio State House of Representatives, where he served from 1947 to 1954; he went on to become Ohio attorney general (1957-1958, 1963-1968). In 1968, he was elected as a Republican to the U.S. Senate, serving there until 1974.

He resigned in 1974 to become U.S. Attorney General for President Richard Nixon. He continued in that position in the administration of Gerald Ford until 1975, when he became the first person to resign from the Ford cabinet. He then served as U.S. ambassador to India until 1977, returning to law practice in Mechanicsburg thereafter.