March 26th, 2017

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Vice Presidential nominee Geraldine Ferraro

On this date in 2011, Geraldine Ferraro died at the age of 75. In 1984, Democratic Presidential nominee Walter Mondale chose Ferraro as the first woman to run for the Vice Presidency on a major party ticket (they lost to Ronald Reagan's landslide re-election victory). She had been a member of the House of Representatives, representing New York, from 1979 to 1985.
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Cabinet: John Y. Mason

On this date in 1844, John Y. Mason took office as the 16th Secretary of the Navy. He served until the end of John Tyler's term, just under a year. With the coming of President James Polk, Mason moved over to serve as the 18th Attorney General (for a year and a half). When Mason's successor as Navy Secretary, George Bancroft, was appointed Ambassador to England, Mason was moved back to head the Navy Department, as the 18th Secretary of the Navy, serving until the end of Polk's term in 1849. Mason later served as Ambassador to France, from 1853 until his death in office in October 1859.
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Cabinet: Elaine Chao

Today is Secretary of Transporation Elaine Chao's 64th birthday (she took office January 31, 2017). Previously the 24th Secretary of Labor (2001-09), she was the first Asian Pacific American woman and first Chinese American member of the Cabinet. She was also the only Cabinet member to serve George W. Bush's entire term of office.

Born in Taiwan, Chao came to the US at the age of 8, and graduated from Mount Holyoke College in 1975 and the Harvard Business School in 1979. In 1993, she married Senator Mitch McConnell, who is eleven years older than she, and who was first elected in 1984 and is currently the Senate Majority Leader and the longest serving Senator in Kentucky history.