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Bennett, William

  • By: Miriam D. Sealock
  • In: Encyclopedia of Drug Policy
  • Edited by: Mark A. R. Kleiman & James E. Hawdon
  • Subject:Public Policy, Drug Crimes

Wiliam John Bennett (1943–) was the first director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), or “drug czar.” ONDCP was created as a result of the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1988. As director of ONDCP, Bennett's role was to epitomize and affirm the current administration's policies regarding illicit drug control and to be at the forefront of the “War on Drugs” in the United States. Bennett's tough stance toward drug law violators and his focus on the moral dimension of drug use characterized his tenure.

Bennett was appointed as director of ONDCP in 1989 by President George H. W. Bush and served in that capacity until his resignation in 1990. A graduate of Williams College (B.A., 1965), University of Texas, Austin (Ph.D., 1970), and ...

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