Bruce Babbitt

American lawyer and politician

Bruce Edward Babbitt (born June 27, 1938) is an American politician from the state of Arizona. A member of the Democratic Party, Babbitt served as the 16th governor of Arizona from 1978 to 1987, and as the United States Secretary of the Interior from 1993 through 2001.

Bruce Babbitt
Bruce Babbitt 2007.jpg
47th United States Secretary of the Interior
In office
January 22, 1993 – January 2, 2001
PresidentBill Clinton
Preceded byManuel Lujan
Succeeded byGale Norton
16th Governor of Arizona
In office
March 4, 1978 – January 6, 1987
Preceded byWesley Bolin
Succeeded byEvan Mecham
19th Attorney General of Arizona
In office
January 6, 1975 – March 4, 1978
GovernorRaúl Castro
Wesley Bolin
Preceded byWarner Lee
Succeeded byJack LaSota
Personal details
Bruce Edward Babbitt

(1938-06-27) June 27, 1938 (age 82)
Flagstaff, Arizona, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Hattie Coons
EducationUniversity of Notre Dame (BS)
Newcastle University (MS)
Harvard University (LLB)

Babbitt was born in Flagstaff, Arizona, the son of Frances B. (Perry) and Paul James Babbitt, Sr.[1][2] He graduated from the University of Notre Dame.[3]

He married Harriet Coons (known as Hattie) in 1968. She has worked as an attorney in Arizona and Washington, D.C., and served as United States Ambassador to the Organization of American States from 1993 to 1997, and as Deputy Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development from 1997 to 2001 during the Clinton Administration.[4]

In 1993, after Byron White retired from the Supreme Court, Babbitt was seen as a top pick for his replacement.[5][6] President Clinton picked Ruth Bader Ginsburg instead.


  1. "Candidate's Father Dies in Flagstaff". AP NEWS.
  3. Arizona Governor Bruce Edward Babbitt, National Governors Association.
  4. Harriet C. Babbitt-Jennings Strouss Attorneys at Law Archived January 13, 2013, at the Wayback Machine
  5. Friedman, Thomas L. "Latest Version of Supreme Court List: Babbitt in Lead, 2 Judges Close Behind." The New York Times 8 June 1993.
  6. Berke, Richard L. "2 Republicans Oppose Naming Babbitt to Court." The New York Times 9 June 1993.