The U.S. Institute of Peace is deeply saddened by the loss of Frank C. Carlucci III, who died on June 3 at the age of 87. A former secretary of defense, Carlucci, together with his wife Marcia, was an early and steadfast supporter of the U.S. Institute of Peace and its mission to prevent violent conflict around the world.
"Secretary Carlucci earned respect from all sides for his professionalism and dedication to U.S. national security in a career that spanned decades of service to the American public," said USIP President Nancy Lindborg. "He believed in the U.S. Institute of Peace as a critical component of national security and was an important USIP champion. His support was critical to furthering USIP's role in preventing and resolving conflict around the world."
In recognition of his immense contributions to U.S. national security, USIP honored him with its Frank C. Carlucci III Auditorium in its permanent headquarters. Secretary and Mrs. Carlucci were both longtime members of USIP's International Advisory Council, actively participating as advocates and ambassadors for the Institute.
"During both Republican and Democratic administrations, Secretary Carlucci devoted himself to doing what was right for America. He represented the best of Washington and he leaves a legacy of great foreign policy and national security accomplishment. He always put America's national security first and he helped shape the institutions of American global leadership. These included the Institute, where his leadership had an immeasurable impact," said USIP Board Chair Stephen Hadley.
A Career of Public Service Promoting U.S. National Security
Carlucci served in a number of high-level national security positions during his distinguished career, including as secretary of defense and national security advisor in the administration of President Ronald Reagan. Across his various roles in the federal government for six presidents, Carlucci was a skilled leader of some of United States' biggest bureaucracies and widely credited for his effectiveness and judgement.
He began his noteworthy career as a public servant as an officer in the U.S. Navy in 1952. Carlucci joined the foreign service in in 1956 and worked at the U.S. Department of State until 1969. In 1960, he was sent to Congo on the eve of its independence and famously saved a carload of Americans from an angry mob.
From 1969 through 1975, he held several domestic policy positions, serving as secretary of health, education, and welfare; deputy director of the Office of Management and Budget; and director of the Office of Economic Opportunity, which was created by R. Sargent Shriver to fight President Lyndon Johnson's "War on Poverty." He was the U.S. ambassador to Portugal from 1975-1978, where the Carlucci American International School of Lisbon is named for him.
From 1978 until 1981, Carlucci was the deputy director of the CIA, where he is revered for calming the agency during a crisis in leadership. In 1981, he joined the Reagan administration as deputy defense secretary, eventually also serving as President Reagan's national security advisor and secretary of defense. At the NSC, Carlucci led an effort to reassert the Council's traditional role as a coordinator of policy formation.
Following his long tenure in public service, he became managing director of the Carlyle Group in 1989, chairman in 1993, and chairman emeritus in 2003.