A Tribute to President Ford

Featured Content A collection of documents and images acknowledging President Ford


A Tribute to President Gerald R. Ford

Gerald R. Ford became the 38th President of the United States when he succeeded to that office following the resignation of President Richard M. Nixon in 1974. He served as President until 1977, when he was succeeded by President Jimmy Carter. Previously, Ford represented Michigan’s 5th District in the House of Representatives beginning in 1949 until his nomination to the Vice Presidency by President Nixon in 1973, following the resignation of Vice President Spiro T. Agnew. While in Congress, Ford served on the House Appropriations Committee and rose to the position of House Minority Leader. He also served on the Warren Commission investigating the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

Ford as President

One month after taking office as President, President Ford pardoned former President Richard Nixon for his role in the Watergate scandal, which came to be known as the most controversial action of his three year presidency. While he presided over an economy with growing inflation and a recession, he was able to reduce the Federal deficit for the first time since the end of World War II. In foreign policy, he made efforts to strengthen allies while minimizing confrontation with adversaries.

Key actions during his presidency included forming the Economic Policy Review Board in 1974 to oversee all economic policy, signing the Privacy Act of 1974 protecting Americans’ individual privacy rights, and signing the Education for all Handicapped Children Act of 1975 which established special education throughout the United States.

President Ford remained active in his retirement serving on boards of major corporations as well as opening the Betty Ford Clinic with his wife to support research, treatment and rehabilitation for alcoholism. In 1999, He received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, America’s highest civilian honor awarded to individuals making an especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interests of the United States, world peace, cultural or other significant public or private endeavors.

President Ford died on December 26, 2006, at his home in Rancho Mirage, California, at the age of 93. At the time of his death, he was America’s oldest ex-president.

Key Legislation During the Ford Administration

Announcing a Program for the Return of Vietnam Era Draft Evaders and Military Deserters
88 STAT. 2504. Proclamation 4313, September 16, 1974, U.S. Statutes at Large

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Granting Pardon to Richard Nixon
88 STAT. 2502, Proclamation 4311, September 8, 1974, U.S. Statutes at Large

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Privacy Act of 1974
An Act to Amend Title 5
88 STAT. 1896, Public Law 93-579, December 31, 1974, U.S. Statutes at Large

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The Forest and Rangeland Renewable Resources Act, 1974
President Ford's first signed legislation to provide for the Forest Service, Department of Agriculture, to protect, develop, and enhance the productivity and other values of certain of the Nation's lands and resources
88 Stat. 476, PL 93-378 Aug. 17, 1974, U.S. Statutes at Large

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Education for All Handicapped Children Act of 1975
To amend the Education of the Handicapped Act to provide educational assistance to all handicapped children
89 Stat. 773, PL 94-142, November 29, 1975, U.S. Statutes at Large

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Tax Reduction Act of 1975
To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 to provide for a refund of 1974 individual income taxes
Public Law 94-12, March 29, 1975, U.S. Statutes at Large

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Metric Conversion Act of 1975
To declare a national policy of coordinating the increasing use of the metric system in the United States, and to establish a United States Metric Board
Public Law 94-168, December 23, 1975, U.S. Statutes at Large

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Federal Election Campaign Act Amendments of 1974
To impose overall limitations on campaign expenditures and political contributions
Public Law 93-443, October 15, 1974, U.S. Statutes at Large

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Foreign Relations

Calling Upon the President to Issue a Proclamation Recognizing 25th Anniversary of Helsinki Final Act
146 CONG. REC. H8032, September 25, 2000, Congressional Record

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Hemispheric Leaders Discuss Challenges Ahead
143 CONG. REC. E967, May 19, 1997, Congressional Record

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Commemorations

Gerald R. Ford 1913-2006 Gerald R. Ford, Late a President of the United States
Memorial Tributes Delivered in Congress
H. Doc. 110-61, May 22, 2007, House Document

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National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2007
Warner amendment No. 4211, to name the CVN–78 aircraft carrier the USS Gerald Ford
152 CONG. REC. S5837, June 14, 2006, Congressional Record

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Eulogy at the National Funeral Service for Former President Gerald R. Ford
Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: George W. Bush, January 2, 2007 (Book I)

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Images

Meeting with Presidents Gerald Ford, George Bush, and Jimmy Carter in the Residence

Meeting with Presidents Gerald Ford, George Bush, and Jimmy Carter in the Residence, September 14

Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: William J. Clinton, September 14, 1993 (Book II)

Attending the funeral of King Hussein I of Jordan with former Presidents Gerald R. Ford, Jimmy Carter, and George Bush in Amman

Attending the funeral of King Hussein I of Jordan with former Presidents Gerald R. Ford, Jimmy Carter, and George Bush in Amman

Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: William J. Clinton, February 8, 1999 (Book I)

Attending the funeral service for Former President Gerald R. Ford at the Washington National Cathedral

Attending the funeral service for Former President Gerald R. Ford at the Washington National Cathedral

Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: George W. Bush, January 1, 2007 (Book I)

Hosting the Presidents' Summit for America's Future, with former Presidents Gerald Ford and George Bush and former First Lady Nancy Reagan in Philadelphia, PA

Hosting the Presidents' Summit for America's Future, with former Presidents Gerald Ford and George Bush and former First Lady Nancy Reagan in Philadelphia, PA

Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States: William J. Clinton, April 28, 2007 (Book I)