Wheatley, Willard (b. July 16, 1915, Tortola, British Virgin Islands - d. Jan. 22, 1997), chief minister of the British Virgin Islands (1971-79).
Whelan, Thomas J. (b. Jan. 28, 1922 - d. July 31, 2002, Naples, Fla.), mayor of Jersey City (1963-71). Whelan, who was City Council president, took office as mayor Nov. 15, 1963, filling a vacancy left by the resignation of Mayor Thomas Gangemi, who had to step down when he could not prove he was an American citizen. Whelan himself was forced to step down on July 7, 1971, when he was convicted in federal court of conspiracy and extortion in a multimillion-dollar political kickback scheme on city and county contracts. He served 7 years of a 15-year prison sentence in Lewisburg, Pa. Convicted with him was another former Jersey City mayor, John V. Kenny.
White, Bill, byname of William Howard White (b. June 16, 1954, San Antonio, Texas), mayor of Houston (2004-10).
White, Frank D(urward), original name (before adoption) Durward Frank Kyle (b. June 4, 1933, Texarkana, Texas - d. May 21, 2003, Little Rock, Ark.), governor of Arkansas (1981-83). A Republican, he ousted Bill Clinton from the governor's office in 1980, after Clinton had served one term as the state's chief executive. Clinton came back to defeat White in 1982, and again in 1986. White was known as the signer of a measure approved by the legislature requiring Arkansas teachers to include "creation science" in the curriculum if the theory of evolution was also taught. The law was later struck down as unconstitutional by a federal judge after a trial that drew national attention. In July 1998 Gov. Mike Huckabee appointed him state banking commissioner.
White, Sir Hugo (Moresby) (b. Oct. 22, 1939, Torquay, England - d. June 1, 2014), governor of Gibraltar (1995-97); knighted 1991.
White, Kevin H(agan) (b. Sept. 25, 1929, Boston, Mass. - d. Jan. 27, 2012, Boston), mayor of Boston (1968-84).
White, Walter (Francis) (b. July 1, 1893, Atlanta, Ga. - d. March 21, 1955, New York City), executive secretary (1931-55) of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Blue-eyed and blond, he was only partially (5/32) of African descent, but went through life as a black by personal choice. In 1918 he joined the NAACP national staff, when James Weldon Johnson, the executive secretary, impressed by the young man, hired him as assistant secretary. After Johnson retired, White succeeded him. In 1930 he helped block Pres. Herbert Hoover's nomination of Judge John J. Parker of North Carolina for U.S. Supreme Court justice. The Senate rejected Parker, who was on record as being opposed to black suffrage, by a 41-39 vote. White was especially prominent in the campaign against lynching. Aided by his fair skin, he personally investigated 41 lynchings and 8 race riots while he was assistant secretary, earning a widespread reputation for courage and sagacity. He was a powerful lobbyist for a federal anti-lynching law. He pushed such a bill nearer to passage than ever before in 1938, when it was defeated only after seven weeks of filibuster by Southern senators. Although no law was enacted, he influenced the climate of public opinion with his exposés and propaganda. The recorded number of lynchings during the period of his activity dropped from 67 in 1918 to 3 in 1955; the crime had become obsolescent. In 1937 he was awarded the Spingarn Medal for his efforts. He was the author of Pres. Franklin D. Roosevelt's executive order on fair employment practices in war industry during World War II and was responsible for Pres. Harry Truman's stand on civil rights, which led to the Dixiecrat bolt, in 1948. He was also a member of the Advisory Council for Government of the Virgin Islands in 1934-35 and a consultant to U.S. delegations to the UN.
Whitehead, Sir Edgar (Cuthbert Fremantle) (b. Feb. 8, 1905, Berlin, Germany - d. Sept. 22, 1971, Newbury, Berkshire, England), prime minister of Southern Rhodesia (1958-62); knighted 1954.
Whitelaw (of Penrith in the County of Cumbria), William (Stephen Ian) Whitelaw, (1st) Viscount (b. June 28, 1918, Nairn, Scotland - d. July 1, 1999, Penrith, England), British politician. He served in World War II, winning the Military Cross as a tank battalion commander in the Scots Guards, and became a Conservative MP in 1955. "Willie" Whitelaw served as lord president of the council and leader of the House of Commons (1970-72) and Northern Ireland secretary (1972-73) under Prime Minister Edward Heath. He negotiated a power-sharing agreement designed to give the Catholic minority in Northern Ireland a stake in government, but the plan collapsed after a Protestant workers' general strike, leaving the province to be ruled from London for the next quarter-century. Under Margaret Thatcher he became deputy prime minister (1979-88) and home secretary (1979-83). He was considered a genial man, famously serene in the heat of political battle, and he became the cool and amiable anchor of the cabinet. He proved the perfect foil to Thatcher and she relied heavily on his judgment and diplomatic skills in quelling potential dissent among her MPs. She regularly turned to him at times of crisis and made him a member of all her key cabinet committees. "Have a word with Willie" and "Willie is looking into it" became her answers when political problems loomed on the horizon. He never claimed to have pushed through any landmark legislation, nor was he ever an ideas man. In 1983 he was made a viscount and moved to the more sedate surroundings of the House of Lords, becoming the Conservative leader there and again lord president of the council. His retirement from Thatcher's cabinet in 1988 after a stroke was seen as the moment when her premiership began to go wrong. She was removed by a revolt of her own MPs two years later. He was deputy leader of the Conservative Party from 1975 to 1991.
Whiteley, Sir Peter (John Frederick) (b. Dec. 13, 1920 - d. Feb. 1, 2016, England), lieutenant governor of Jersey (1979-84); knighted 1976.
Whitelocke, John (b. 1757 - d. Oct. 23, 1833, Hall Barn Park, Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire, England), British governor of Saint-Domingue (1793-94). He is most notable for his command of the failed second expedition to the Río de la Plata (1807), where he was defeated by the Spanish viceroy Santiago de Liniers, and from where he returned in disgrace, being found guilty of several charges related to his command.
Whiteman, Bernard (Denzil), byname Ben Whiteman (b. Aug. 20, 1954), prime minister of Curaçao (2015-16). He was also minister of health and environment (2013-15).
Whiteman, Unison (Leslie) (b. Sept. 23, 1939, Grenada - d. [executed] Oct. 19, 1983, St. George's, Grenada), foreign minister of Grenada (1981-83). He was also minister of agriculture and fisheries (1979-81) and tourism (1979-83).
Whitford, Tony, byname of Anthony Wilfred James Whitford (b. June 11, 1941, Fort Smith, N.W.T.), commissioner of the Northwest Territories (2005-10).
Whitlam, (Edward) Gough (pronounced Goff) (b. July 11, 1916, Kew, Vic. - d. Oct. 21, 2014, Sydney, N.S.W.), prime minister of Australia (1972-75). Elected to parliament in 1952, he became deputy leader of the Australian Labor Party in 1960 and leader in 1967. Labor won the elections of Dec. 2, 1972, and he became prime minister. He ended military conscription, freed imprisoned draft resisters, announced withdrawal of Australian forces from Vietnam, lowered barriers to Asian and African immigration, established diplomatic relations with the People's Republic of China, and generally stood for more independence from the United States in foreign affairs. He was also foreign minister until 1973. Rising inflation and unemployment as well as administrative blunders eroded public confidence in his government and by the summer of 1975 his government had lost the parliamentary support needed to pass expenditure bills. When Whitlam steadfastly refused to call new elections to resolve the parliamentary deadlock, Governor-General Sir John Kerr controversially dismissed him from office on Nov. 11, 1975, and appointed a caretaker administration led by Liberal leader Malcolm Fraser. It was the first time in 200 years that a representative of the British crown had exercised the right to remove an elected prime minister. In the general election that followed, the Liberal-National Country Party coalition won a record majority of seats in parliament. Losing another election in 1977, Whitlam resigned the party leadership and his seat in parliament in 1978. In 1983-86 he was Australian ambassador to UNESCO.
Whitman, Christine Todd, née Christine Temple Todd (b. Sept. 26, 1946, New York City), governor of New Jersey (1994-2001). She attended her first Republican National Convention in San Francisco in 1956, at age nine. In 1990 she took on the task of running against Sen. Bill Bradley; it was just after Gov. Jim Florio's big tax increases, and she attacked Bradley for taking no position on them. The result was a near-upset: Bradley won by only 50%-47%. In 1993 she ran for governor, winning the June primary with 40% of the vote to 33% for former attorney general Cary Edwards and 24% for former state senator James Wallwork. Florio's 1990 tax package was very much like Bill Clinton's 1993 tax increase. Clinton political advisers James Carville and Paul Begala ran Florio's campaign and Democratic National Chairman David Wilhelm said the race "will be a referendum on the type of leadership" both Florio and Clinton have provided. It was widely thought at the time that voters were resentful of the rich, and the two candidates' backgrounds presented a vivid contrast that the Florio campaign underlined. Florio ads showed pictures of Whitman's house; she was ridiculed for saying "as funny as it seems, $500 is a lot of money" to many people. But she trumped him by promising a 30% across-the-board income tax cut over three years. She defeated Florio 49%-48%. Days later she was embarrassed when her consultant Ed Rollins claimed money was spent to "depress" voter turnout in black areas; she steadfastly denied it, and Rollins later repudiated his statement. In office, she delivered on her promises and became a national Republican star. Her tax cuts were passed ahead of schedule. In 1997 she eked out another narrow victory, 47%-46%, over Democrat Jim McGreevey. In 2001-03 she was director of the Environmental Protection Agency.
Whittaker, Geoffrey Owen (b. 1932 - d. Feb. 24, 2015, Ashley, Northamptonshire, England), governor of Anguilla (1987-89).
Whittier, Sumner G(age) (b. July 1, 1911, Everett, Mass. - d. Jan. 8, 2010, Westminster, Md.), U.S. veterans administrator (1957-61).
Wibaux, Fernand (b. July 1, 1921, Paris, France - d. Dec. 17, 2013), high commissioner of New Caledonia (1985-86). He was also French ambassador to Mali (1961-64), Chad (1968-74), Senegal (1977-83), and Lebanon (1983-85).
Wibisono, Makarim (b. May 8, 1947, Mataram, Indonesia), Indonesian diplomat. He was permanent representative to the United Nations (1997-2001).
Wickbom, Sten (Gustaf) (b. March 14, 1931, Stockholm, Sweden - d. Dec. 26, 2015, Växjö, Sweden), justice minister of Sweden (1983-87) and governor of Kronoberg (1988-95).
Wickliffe, Charles A(nderson) (b. June 8, 1788, near Springfield, Ky. - d. Oct. 31, 1869, near Ilchester, Md.), governor of Kentucky (1839-40) and U.S. postmaster general (1841-45).
Wickman, (Hans) Krister (b. April 13, 1924, Stockholm, Sweden - d. Sept. 10, 1993, Stockholm), foreign minister of Sweden (1971-73). He was also minister without portfolio (1966-69), minister of industry (1969-71), and governor of the Riksbank (1973-76).
Wickramaratne, Kingsley (Tissa) (d. Oct. 1, 2008, Colombo, Sri Lanka), governor of Southern province, Sri Lanka (2002-06). He was also minister of internal and international commerce and food (1994-2000).
Wickremanayake, Ratnasiri (b. May 5, 1933 - d. Dec. 27, 2016), prime minister of Sri Lanka (2000-01, 2005-10). He has also been minister of plantation industry (1975-77), justice (1977), public administration, local government, and plantation industry (1994-97), public administration, home affairs, and plantation industries (1997-2000), Buddhist and religious affairs and plantation industries (2000-04), cultural affairs and plan implementation (2001-04), Buddhist affairs, public security, and law and order (2004-05), disaster management (2005-10), public management reforms (2010), and good governance and infrastructure (2010-15).
Wickremesinghe, Ranil (b. March 24, 1949, Colombo, Ceylon [now Sri Lanka]), prime minister of Sri Lanka (1993-94, 2001-04, 2015- ). He was first elected to parliament in 1977 and moved fast up the hierarchy of the United National Party (UNP) after party stalwart Ranasinghe Premadasa was elected president in 1989. Premadasa appointed him minister of industries and leader of the house in parliament, making Wickremesinghe responsible for steering the party through a hostile chamber. He became prime minister in 1993 but after 16 months was relegated to the opposition when the UNP was ousted in elections by the People's Alliance (PA). He took over the reins of the UNP in 1994 at the tail of the party's 17 turbulent years in power, which saw Sri Lanka go through impressive economic transformation, bloody ethnic violence, and a brutal leftist youth uprising. He succeeded Premadasa, Lalith Athulathmudali, and Gamini Dissanayake, all of whom were assassinated by suspected rebels. Wickremesinghe himself narrowly escaped an attack in December 1999 when a suspected Tamil Tiger suicide bomber blew themselves up. He was credited with the smooth transition of power to the PA government, insisting the new government be given a chance to carry out its agenda. Later he hardened, accusing the government of going on political "witch hunts" against opposition politicians, including himself, and of using violence against opponents. He launched talks with Pres. Chandrika Kumaratunga in 2000 to reach consensus about a new constitution but denied her support at the last minute. The PA government was forced to shelve the new constitution. He became prime minister again when the UNP won elections in 2001. He achieved a negotiated ceasefire in the country's 20-year-old civil war, but was defeated by the PA in elections in 2004. He unsuccessfully stood for president in 2005. In 2015 he became prime minister again and also minister of policy planning, economic affairs, child, youth, and cultural affairs (from September only policy planning and economic affairs).
Widmer-Schlumpf, Eveline, née Schlumpf, official surname Widmer (b. March 16, 1956, Felsberg, Graubünden, Switzerland), president of the government of Graubünden (2001, 2005) and justice minister (2008-10), finance minister (2010-15), and president (2012) of Switzerland; daughter of Leon Schlumpf.
Widodo, Joko, byname Jokowi, original name Mulyono (b. June 21, 1961, Surakarta, Indonesia), governor of Jakarta (2012-14) and president of Indonesia (2014- ). He was also mayor of Surakarta (2005-12).
Widodo, Makmur (b. Aug. 1, 1945, Surakarta, Netherlands East Indies [now Indonesia]), Indonesian diplomat. He was permanent representative to the United Nations (2001-04).
Wiebe, J(ohn) E(dward) N(eil), byname Jack Wiebe (b. May 31, 1936, Herbert, Sask. - d. April 16, 2007), lieutenant governor of Saskatchewan (1994-2000). He served on the Board and as chair of many Saskatchewan cooperatives, on the Board of Directors of Sask Power Corporation and VIA Rail Canada Inc. as well as on the Federal Department of Agriculture Trade Commission to China and the Canadian Wheat Board Trade Commission to Brazil. Wiebe played an active role in his community serving as founding member and secretary-treasurer of the Herbert Ferry Regional Park, Herbert Lion's Club, and Rush Lake Multiple 4-H Club, senior hockey coach and referee. He served as member of the Legislative Assembly in Saskatchewan from 1971 to 1978 for the Morse constituency. On Oct. 21, 1994, he was inducted into the Order of St. John of Jerusalem at the grade of knight. In 2000, Prime Minister Jean Chrétien appointed him to the Senate, where he served on numerous committees, dealing with everything from agriculture and forestry to banking. He retired in 2004.
Wiegel, Hans (b. July 16, 1941, Amsterdam, Netherlands), Dutch deputy prime minister and interior minister (1977-81) and queen's commissioner of Friesland (1982-94).
Wiggins, James Russell (b. Dec. 4, 1903, Luverne, Minn. - d. Nov. 19, 2000, Ellsworth, Maine), U.S. ambassador to the United Nations (1968-69). He was primarily known as a newspaper editor. He was editor and executive vice president of the Washington Post from 1960. In 1968 he retired from the Post to accept the appointment as UN ambassador for the final months of Pres. Lyndon B. Johnson's administration.
Wigmore, Robert (b. Sept. 8, 1949, Rarotonga, Cook Islands), foreign minister of the Cook Islands (2010).
Wigny, Pierre (Louis Jean Joseph) (b. April 18, 1905, Liége [now Liège], Belgium - d. Sept. 21, 1986, Brussels, Belgium), foreign minister of Belgium (1958-61). He was also minister of colonies (1947-50) and justice (1965-68).
Wijdenbosch, Jules (Albert) (b. May 2, 1941, Paramaribo, Dutch Guiana [now Suriname]), prime minister (1987-88), vice president (1991), and president (1996-2000) of Suriname. He was also interior (1985-88) and justice (1986-87) minister.
Wijeratne, Ranjan (b. April 4, 1931 - d. [killed in a bomb blast] March 2, 1991, Colombo, Sri Lanka), foreign minister of Sri Lanka (1989-90). He was also minister of plantation industries and minister of state for defense (1990-91).
Wijetunga, Dingiri Banda, also spelled Wijetunge (b. Feb. 15, 1922, Polgaha area, Kandy district, Central province, Ceylon [now Sri Lanka] - d. Sept. 21, 2008, Kandy, Sri Lanka), governor of North Western province (1988-89) and prime minister (1989-93) and president (1993-94) of Sri Lanka. He was also minister of information and broadcasting (1977-78), posts and telecommunications (1978-87), power and highways (1978-79), power and energy (1979-81), agricultural development and research and food and cooperatives (1987-88), finance (1989-94), labour and vocational training (1991-93), defense, Buddhist affairs, and policy planning and implementation (1993-94), and higher education (1993).
Wijewickrema, (Don Sarath) Mohan (b. June 12, 1953, Colombo, Ceylon [now Sri Lanka]), governor of North Eastern province (2006), governor of Eastern province (2007-15), and acting governor of Northern province (2007-08), Sri Lanka.
Wike, Nyesom (Ezenwo) (b. Aug. 24, 1967, Obio-Akpor local government area [now in Rivers state], Nigeria), governor of Rivers (2015- ).
Wild, Sir (Herbert) Richard (Churton) (b. Sept. 20, 1912, Blenheim, New Zealand - d. May 22, 1978, Karori, Wellington, New Zealand), acting governor-general of New Zealand (1967, 1972, 1977); knighted 1966. He was chief justice from 1966 to 1978.
Wilenski, Peter Stephen (b. May 10, 1939, Lódz, Poland - d. Nov. 3, 1994, Sydney, N.S.W.), Australian diplomat. He was permanent representative to the United Nations (1989-92).
Wiles, Sir Donald Alonzo (b. Jan. 8, 1912, Barbados - d. Nov. 21, 1999), administrator of Montserrat (1960-64); knighted 1984.
Wilford, Sir Thomas Mason (b. June 20, 1870, Lower Hutt, New Zealand - d. June 22, 1939, Wellington, New Zealand), defence minister of New Zealand (1928-29); knighted 1930. He was also mayor of Wellington (1910-11), minister of marine (1917-19) and justice (1917-19, 1928-29), and high commissioner to the United Kingdom (1930-33).
Wilhelm I, in full Wilhelm Friedrich Ludwig (b. March 22, 1797, Berlin, Prussia [now in Germany] - d. March 9, 1888, Berlin), German emperor (1871-88) and king of Prussia (1861-88). He was the second son of the future king Friedrich Wilhelm III of Prussia. He took part in the war against France in 1814 and continued a military career. In 1840, when his childless elder brother, Friedrich Wilhelm IV, ascended the throne, he became prince of Prussia and heir presumptive. In March 1848 he proposed to put down revolutionary movements by force, earning him the sobriquet of Kartätschenprinz ("Prince of Grapeshot"). After a temporary exile in England, he returned to Prussia in June 1848, and in 1849 he commanded the troops sent to defeat an uprising in Baden. Having been appointed deputy (October 1857) and then regent (October 1858) for his ailing brother, he succeeded him as king on Jan. 2, 1861. The war against Denmark and the Seven Weeks' War against Austria in 1866, both of which he originally opposed, made Prussia master of northern Germany and made him recognize that Otto von Bismarck, his prime minister, was more necessary to Prussia than he himself was. The war with France in 1870-71 led to the foundation of the German Reich. His strong identification with Prussia made him reluctant, but Bismarck induced him to accept the imperial title by means of a sham offer from all the German princes. Wilhelm was proclaimed German emperor at Versailles, in conquered France, on Jan. 18, 1871, exactly 170 years after Prussia became a kingdom. He generally accepted Bismarck's advice and refused repeated offers of resignation from the chancellor, answering "Never" to the last one in 1877. Two attempts on his life in 1878 (one of which seriously wounded him) caused general indignation and were exploited by Bismarck to justify anti-Socialist legislation.
Wilhelm II, in full Friedrich Wilhelm Viktor Albert (b. Jan. 27, 1859, Potsdam, Prussia [now in Germany] - d. June 4, 1941, Doorn, Netherlands), German emperor and king of Prussia (1888-1918). He was the eldest child of the future emperor Friedrich III and the British princess Victoria, daughter of Queen Victoria. In 1881 he married Princess Augusta Victoria of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Augustenburg, who bore him six sons and a daughter. After his father's short reign in 1888, Wilhelm found himself Kaiser at the age of 29. In 1890 he dismissed Chancellor Otto von Bismarck. He had more progressive ideas than Bismarck on social policy, but the first disappointments were enough to make him revert to a policy of severity against the Social Democrats. He was ill-equipped to steer German foreign policy along a rational course and let the 1887 Reinsurance Treaty with Russia lapse, opening the way for a Russian-French alliance. In 1908 he gave a tactless interview to The Daily Telegraph which counteracted his purpose of promoting Anglo-German friendship and led to his great humiliation in the consequent internal crisis in Germany. In 1914 he readily gave Austria-Hungary a "blank cheque" in its confrontation with Serbia, then wavered but failed to prevent the imminent catastrophe. Although nominally supreme commander in World War I, the role of ultimate arbiter of German policy in wartime was too heavy for him to sustain. He had long lost all influence when the collapse of the German offensive of 1918 made it obviously necessary to end the war. He refused to abdicate until his hand was forced when revolution broke out on November 9. He went into exile in the Netherlands, which refused Allied demands for his extradition. After the death of his wife in 1921, he married Princess Hermine von Schönaich-Carolath in 1922.
Wilhelmina (Helena Pauline Maria) (b. Aug. 31, 1880, The Hague, Netherlands - d. Nov. 28, 1962, Het Loo, Gelderland, Netherlands), queen of the Netherlands (1890-1948). She was the only daughter of King Willem III and his second wife, Emma of Waldeck-Pyrmont. On her father's death (Nov. 23, 1890) she became queen under the regency of her mother. After coming of age, she was enthroned on Sept. 6, 1898, at Amsterdam's Nieuwe Kerk. The young queen's beauty and dignity did much to bring the affections of people who had been tempted by republicanism back to loyalty to the House of Oranje-Nassau. On Feb. 7, 1901, she married Duke Heinrich of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1876-1934), who became Prince Hendrik of the Netherlands, and on April 30, 1909, she gave birth to a daughter, Princess Juliana. During World War I, she declared her government's firm intention to maintain the integrity and neutrality of the Netherlands. In World War II, she issued her "flaming protest" at the German invasion of her country on May 10, 1940, and decided to leave for England with her family; she arrived in London three days later, followed by members of the cabinet. She became the symbol of Dutch resistance and exhorted her people in broadcasts over Radio Orange to hold on until liberation should come. In 1942 she visited Canada and the United States. She visited the southern liberated areas of her country in March 1945 and took residence near Breda on April 27. At Amsterdam on June 28 and at The Hague on July 7 she was welcomed back with great enthusiasm. After two periods of ill health during which Juliana was regent, she abdicated the throne to Juliana on Sept. 4, 1948, and retired to her palace, Het Loo, near Apeldoorn.
Wili(-Wüest), Felix (b. Oct. 16, 1916 - d. Dec. 6, 2011), Schultheiss of Luzern (1972, 1978).
Wilkes, Sir Michael (John) (b. June 11, 1940 - d. Oct. 27, 2013, London, England), lieutenant governor of Jersey (1995-2000); knighted 1991.
Wilkins, Sir Michael (Compton Lockwood) (b. Jan. 4, 1933 - d. April 25, 1994), lieutenant governor of Guernsey (1990-94); knighted 1985.
Wilkins, Roy (Ottoway) (b. Aug. 30, 1901, St. Louis, Mo. - d. Sept. 8, 1981, New York City), executive secretary (1955-64) and executive director (1964-77) of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). As managing editor of the Kansas City Call, a newspaper serving the black community, his editorials urged blacks to use their vote and were instrumental in the defeat of U.S. Sen. Henry J. Allen, whom Wilkins termed "a militant racist." His efforts were noticed by Walter White, executive secretary of the NAACP, who made him his chief assistant in New York in 1931. His investigation of the working conditions of blacks on Mississippi levees resulted in a 1932 report that prompted congressional action. He edited The Crisis, the official organ of the NAACP, from 1934 to 1949. In 1949-50 he was acting executive secretary, when White took a year's leave, and also chairman of the National Emergency Civil Rights Mobilization, a coalition of anti-Communist liberal groups. He won a historic 1954 Supreme Court decision that overturned the doctrine of "separate but equal" educational facilities. After White's death in 1955 he was appointed to the NAACP's highest administrative post. During a period of racial turbulence and mass protest, he directed the organization on a course that sought equal rights through legal redress and avoided alienating significant segments of the white power structure, although, under the pressure of activist groups, it diversified its activities to include nonviolent direct action and to extend legal aid to other, often more militant, groups. In August 1963 he helped organize the historic civil rights march on Washington. In 1977 he retired and was succeeded by Benjamin L. Hooks.
Wilkinson, Wallace (Glenn) (b. Dec. 12, 1941, Casey county, Ky. - d. July 5, 2002, Lexington, Ky.), governor of Kentucky (1987-91). A Democrat, his administration helped create the Kentucky Lottery, which he had pushed as an alternative to higher taxes, and the 1990 Kentucky Education Reform Act, which set high performance standards, held schools accountable for their results, and greatly increased school funding. But he was dogged throughout his administration by questions about whether he used his office to advance his business interests. After he became governor, he allegedly got a state-regulated company, Kentucky Central Life Insurance, to pay an inflated price for a money-losing hotel he owned in Frankfort. Kentucky Central later went bankrupt, and the state insurance commissioner sued Wilkinson. The former governor paid $11 million to settle the case in 1999. Wilkinson's appointments secretary, who also was his nephew, went to prison in a bribery scandal. A federal grand jury also investigated Wilkinson, but he was never charged and denied any wrongdoing. His business empire collapsed in bankruptcy in 2001.
Willaert, Maurice (Adolphe Jules) (b. May 30, 1910, Heliopolis, Egypt - d. May 4, 2003, Ukkel, Brussels-Capital region, Belgium), governor of Kivu (1957-...).
Willem-Alexander (Claus George Ferdinand) (b. April 27, 1967, Utrecht, Netherlands), king of the Netherlands (2013- ); son of Beatrix. On Feb. 2, 2002, he married Máxima Zorreguieta (b. May 17, 1971, Buenos Aires, Argentina), among some controversy because her father, Jorge Zorreguieta, was secretary of agriculture (1979-81) in the Argentine military regime of Gen. Jorge Rafael Videla. Three daughters were born to the couple, Catharina-Amalia Beatrix Carmen Victoria (b. Dec. 7, 2003, The Hague), Alexia Juliana Marcela Laurentien (b. June 26, 2005, The Hague), and Ariane Wilhelmina Máxima Ines (b. April 10, 2007, The Hague).
Willemsen, Willem Anne Constant (b. Aug. 2, 1868, Curaçao - d. 19...), acting administrator of Saba (1918-19).
Willesee, Don(ald Robert) (b. April 14, 1916, Derby, Western Australia - d. Sept. 9, 2003, Perth, Western Australia), foreign minister of Australia (1973-75). He rose through the Labor Party ranks to enter the Senate in 1950 where he served for 25 years. He became special minister of state in 1972 as part of the Gough Whitlam government before being appointed minister for foreign affairs.
Willi, Andrea (b. May 26, 1955, Balzers, Liechtenstein), foreign minister of Liechtenstein (1993-2001).
William III, in full William Henry, byname William of Orange, Dutch Willem Hendrik, prins van Oranje (b. Nov. 14 [Nov. 4, O.S.], 1650, The Hague, Netherlands - d. March 19 [March 8, O.S.], 1702, Kensington Palace, London, England), king of England, Scotland (as William II), and Ireland (as William I) (1689-1702; until 1695 jointly with his wife Mary II). He was also stadholder of Holland and Zeeland (1672-1702), Utrecht (1674-1702), Gelderland and Overijssel (1675-1702), and Drenthe (1696-1702).
William IV, in full William Henry (b. Aug. 21, 1765, London, England - d. June 20, 1837, Windsor Castle, near London), king of the United Kingdom and of Hanover (1830-37).
Williams, Anthony (Allen), original name Anthony Stephen Eggleton (b. July 28, 1951, Los Angeles, Calif.), mayor of Washington, D.C. (1999-2007). As the boy turned 3 years old without having uttered a word, his foster parents were ready to put him in a home for the mentally retarded. Virginia Williams, who was pregnant and had two children at the time, then decided to adopt the boy. He was renamed Anthony Allen Williams. He served in a series of administrative posts from Boston to St. Louis. He came to the District of Columbia in 1993 and held a top job in the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Pres. Bill Clinton's first term. He was appointed the District's chief financial officer in 1995, and his job was to help lift the District out of an abyss of debt and mismanagement, a task he pursued with zeal. He slashed budgets, eliminated services, fired longtime employees, and demanded management reforms. His work won praise in many quarters but earned him the enmity of those who called him the hatchet man for the congressional overseers who suspended the District's limited home rule. Cora Masters Barry, the wife of Mayor Marion S. Barry, tabbed Williams "Mr. Bow Tie," an appellation that stuck because it spoke as much to what some perceived as his technocrat's mentality and life of privilege as it did to his taste in neck wear. He won the Sept. 15, 1998, Democratic primary election for mayor, as well as the general election in November. In 2002 he mounted a historic write-in campaign for the Democratic nomination after the D.C. Board of Elections and Ethics knocked his name off the primary ballot and fined his campaign nearly $300,000 for submitting fraudulent nominating petitions. He defeated his main primary opponent Rev. Willie Wilson, who launched his own write-in campaign, by a 3-1 margin and then was easily reelected.
Williams, Boswell (Bennie) (b. May 16, 1926 - d. July 20, 2014, Castries, Saint Lucia), governor-general of Saint Lucia (1980-82).
Williams, Sir Daniel (Charles) (b. Nov. 4, 1935, St. David parish, Grenada), governor-general of Grenada (1996-2008); knighted 1996. He was also minister of health and housing (1984-89).
Williams, Danny (b. Aug. 4, 1950, St. John's, Newfoundland), premier of Newfoundland and Labrador (2003-10).
Williams, Sir David (b. Oct. 22, 1921 - d. July 16, 2012), governor of Gibraltar (1982-85); knighted 1975.
Williams, Sir Denys (Ambrose) (b. Oct. 12, 1929 - d. Aug. 7, 2014, Rockley, Christ Church, Barbados), acting governor-general of Barbados (1995-96); knighted 1987. He was chief justice from 1987 to 2001.
Williams, Eliud (Thaddeus) (b. Aug. 21, 1948), president of Dominica (2012-13).
Williams, Eric (Eustace) (b. Sept. 25, 1911, Port-of-Spain, Trinidad - d. March 29, 1981, St. Anne, near Port-of-Spain), prime minister of Trinidad and Tobago (1961-81). He became a consultant to the Caribbean Commission, a body established by the United States, the United Kingdom, France, and the Netherlands to coordinate the economic development of the area. From 1948 he headed its research branch, but his assertiveness tended to alienate the member countries, especially the United States, and in 1955 he left and decided to enter Trinidad politics. He organized the People's National Movement (PNM) and led it to victory in the 1956 elections, becoming the colony's first chief minister and in 1959, with the achievement of internal self-government, premier. His party made only a fair showing during the period of the short-lived West Indies Federation (1958-62), but in the national elections of December 1961 for Trinidad and Tobago, the PNM won a landslide victory, after he fought a vigorous campaign against the U.S. naval base at Chaguaramas. He became prime minister of the colony and led it to independence in August 1962. He was successively reelected and served as prime minister until his death. He laid emphasis on social services, education, encouragement of private enterprise, and attraction of foreign investment capital. The policy made Trinidad and Tobago the wealthiest Commonwealth Caribbean nation. Black Power militancy, racial tensions, and labour unrest during the 1960s obliged him to take repressive measures that strengthened his regime but represented a failure of his ideals; in 1973 he threatened to resign, and in the elections of 1974 he campaigned against the corruption in his own government. In 1976 he made the country a republic.
Williams, Evan (John), administrator of Christmas Island and Cocos Islands (2003-05). In 2008-11 he was Australian high commissioner to Cyprus.
Williams, G(erhard) Mennen (b. Feb. 23, 1911, Detroit, Mich. - d. Feb. 2, 1988, Detroit), governor of Michigan (1949-61). Williams, who was tagged with the nickname "Soapy" because his maternal grandfather was the founder of the Mennen soap and toiletries company, was nurtured in a staunch Republican family but became a liberal Democrat. He served as an attorney for the Social Security Board and then as executive assistant to the U.S. attorney general (1939-40) and as a member of the criminal division of the U.S. Department of Justice (1940-41). As six-term governor he was a highly visible politician with his polkadot bow ties, crew cut, and amiable disposition. He enacted strong measures to ensure civil rights and was active in national Democratic politics. After he chose not to seek reelection in 1960, Pres. John F. Kennedy appointed him assistant secretary of state for African affairs, a post he held until 1966. His diplomatic service continued from 1968 to 1970 when he served as ambassador to the Philippines. He then returned to Michigan to serve as justice (1971-83) and chief justice (1983-86) of the state Supreme Court; he retired from the bench in 1986 at the mandatory retirement age of 75.
Williams, Galmo (W.), byname Gilley (b. Bottle Creek, North Caicos, Turks and Caicos Islands), premier of the Turks and Caicos Islands (2009).
Williams, George H(enry) (b. March 26, 1823, New Lebanon, N.Y. - d. April 4, 1910, Portland, Ore.), U.S. attorney general (1871-75) and mayor of Portland (1902-05).
Williams, Henry Harvey (b. Jan. 6, 1917, Gomea village, Saint Vincent - d. Nov. 11, 2004), acting governor-general of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines (1988-89).
Williams, Jack, byname of John Richard Williams (b. Oct. 29, 1909, Los Angeles, Calif. - d. Aug. 24, 1998, Phoenix, Ariz.), U.S. politician. He entered the public eye with a radio career at Phoenix station KOY-AM beginning in 1929. After serving as an elected school board member and appointed city council member, he was elected mayor of Phoenix and served two terms (1956-60). He helped propel Republicans to statewide power in 1966. From 1967 to 1975, he served two two-year terms and one four-year term as governor before retiring. He was the first Arizona governor to serve a four-year term; Arizona voters approved a constitutional change that added four-year terms in 1968. By 1973, Williams was a target of liberal activists, and he narrowly escaped being forced to a recall election. He was criticized for signing anti-union legislation passed in the wake of strife surrounding United Farmworkers Union organizing in the Yuma area.
Williams, Joe, byname of Joseph Williams (b. Oct. 4, 1934, Aitutaki, Cook Islands), Cook Islands politician. Williams, who earlier had already served 7 years in parliament and was minister of health and education (1975-78), was again voted into parliament in 1994 to represent the overseas constituency. He maintained a residence in both Rarotonga and Auckland, where he had an active medical practice. He was again elected in the June 16, 1999, national election, and became prime minister following the resignation of Sir Geoffrey Henry. In October 1999 the New Alliance Party left the government coalition and he led a minority government until resigning in November, bringing to an end ten years of rule by the Cook Islands Party.
Williams, Martin (John) (b. Nov. 3, 1941), governor of Pitcairn Island (1998-2001). He was also British high commissioner to Zimbabwe (1995-98) and New Zealand (1998-2001).
Williams, Michael (Jay) (b. Oct. 16, 1929), acting president of Trinidad and Tobago (1987). He was president of the Senate in 1987-90.
Williams, Philip (b. Feb. 8, 1869, Washington, D.C. - d. Oct. 31, 1942, Bethesda, Md.), governor of the U.S. Virgin Islands (1923-25).
Williams, Sir Rodney (Errey Lawrence) (b. Swetes, Antigua), governor-general of Antigua and Barbuda (2014- ); knighted 2014. He was minister of economic development, industry, and tourism (1991-94), education, youth, sports, and community development (1994-99), and education, culture, and technology (1999-2004).
Williams of Oystermouth, Rowan (Douglas) Williams, Baron (b. June 14, 1950, Swansea, Wales), archbishop of Canterbury (2002-12). He was made a life peer in 2013.
Willie, Alphonse (Morial) (b. April 14, 1958, Bagle village, Simbu province, Papua New Guinea), governor of Simbu (2003-04).
Willingdon, Freeman Freeman-Thomas, (1st) Marquess of (b. Sept. 12, 1866, Ratton, Sussex, England - d. Aug. 12, 1941, London, England), governor of Bombay (1913-18) and Madras (1919-24), governor-general of Canada (1926-31), and viceroy of India (1931-36). In 1892 he assumed the additional surname Freeman by deed poll; in 1910 he was created Baron Willingdon (of Ratton), in 1924 Viscount Willingdon, in 1931 Viscount Ratendone and Earl of Willingdon, and in 1936 Marquess of Willingdon.
Willis, Ralph (b. April 14, 1938, Melbourne, Vic.), finance minister (1990-91, 1991-93) and treasurer (1991, 1993-96) of Australia. He was also minister of employment (1983-87), industrial relations (1983-88), and transport and communications (1988-90).
Willkie, Wendell L(ewis) (b. Feb. 18, 1892, Elwood, Ind. - d. Oct. 8, 1944, New York City), U.S. politician. Although he had been an active Democrat, he turned Republican during Pres. Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal administration. He engaged in a public feud with the government over competition to utility companies from the Tennessee Valley Authority. His effective criticism of the New Deal and his widely circulated article in Fortune (April 1940) entitled "We, the People" made him a dark horse candidate for the Republican presidential nomination. A late start, limited organization, and opposition from the party leadership was compensated by enthusiastic grassroots support and he was nominated on the sixth ballot. He pledged an end to unemployment through policies fostering business expansion and investment, while agreeing with many of the New Deal reforms and with Roosevelt's attitudes in foreign policy. But with the critical nature of the world situation, many voters chose the more experienced leader. Although Willkie carried only 10 states and was defeated by an electoral vote of 449 to 82, he polled more popular votes than any previous Republican candidate (22.3 million, compared to Roosevelt's 27.2 million). Long before the attack on Pearl Harbor, he advocated giving aid to the Allies. He went to England in 1941 and to the Middle East, the Soviet Union, and China in 1942 as the president's personal envoy and later wrote a book, One World (1943), which made a strong plea for postwar international cooperation; it helped persuade many Republicans to turn away from isolationism. Many party leaders, however, were alienated by his activities, and there was considerable opposition when he again ran for the nomination in 1944. Defeated in the Wisconsin primary, he promptly withdrew from the race.
Willmar, Jean-Jacques-Madelaine (b. March 6, 1792, Luxembourg, Austrian Netherlands [now in Luxembourg] - d. Nov. 26, 1866, Luxembourg, Luxembourg), prime minister of Luxembourg (1848-53). He was at the same time minister of foreign affairs, justice, education, and worship.
Willoch, Kåre (Isaachsen) (b. Oct. 3, 1928, Oslo, Norway), prime minister of Norway (1981-86). He was first elected to the Storting (parliament) as a proxy member in 1953 and was elected a full member in 1957. He served as minister of trade and shipping in Norway's first post-World War II non-Socialist coalition cabinets (August-September 1963 and 1965-70). In 1970 he became chairman of the Conservative Party's group in the Storting. In the September 1981 general election he led his party to its best result since 1924. It won 54 seats in the 155-member Storting, taking votes not only from its chief opponent, the Labour Party, but also from two small non-Socialist parties with which it was pledged to form a coalition. Together the three - Conservatives, Centre (agrarian) Party, and Christian Democrats - won 80 seats, against the 69 secured by Labour and its parliamentary ally, the small Socialist Left Party. When formation of a coalition proved impossible, because of Christian Democratic demands for reform of the abortion law, he agreed to form an all-Conservative minority cabinet, relying on the Christian Democratic and Centre parties to provide parliamentary support on most issues. It was the first purely Conservative government in more than 50 years. It was very much a personal triumph for Willoch. In the media the campaign had been dominated by a series of lively political duels between him and Gro Harlem Brundtland, prime minister of the preceding minority Labour government. In 1983 he formed a coalition with the Conservatives and the Centre. It narrowly lost its majority in September 1985 elections, but continued as a minority government until May 1986 when he resigned after failing to push economic austerity measures through parliament. In 1989-98 he was governor of Oslo and Akershus.
Wills, Fred(erick R.) (b. Sept. 18, 1928 - d. February 1992), foreign minister of Guyana (1975-78).
Wilmot, Jack Botwe (b. Feb. 15, 1934), Ghanaian diplomat. He was ambassador to the Benelux countries (1979-85), ambassador to Egypt and Lebanon and high commissioner to Cyprus (1994-96), and permanent representative to the United Nations (1996-99).
Wilopo (b. Oct. 21, 1909, Purworejo, Netherlands East Indies [now in Jawa Tengah, Indonesia] - d. Jan. 20, 1981, Jakarta, Indonesia), prime minister of Indonesia (1952-53). He was also minister of labour (1949-50) and trade and industry (1951-52).
Wilsoe, Elmer (Raynold) (b. April 11, 1943), administrator of Curaçao (1988-94).
Wilson, Alexander (b. 1880 - d. Jan. 26, 1954), administrator of Norfolk Island (1946-52).
Wilson, John P(atrick), Irish Seán P(ádraig) Mac Uilliam (b. July 8, 1923, County Cavan, Ireland - d. July 9, 2007), deputy prime minister (1990-93) and minister of education (1977-81), posts and telegraphs and transport (1982), tourism and transport (1987-89), marine (1989-92), and defense and Gaeltacht (1992-93) of Ireland.
Wilson, Louis H(ugh), Jr. (b. Feb. 11, 1920, Brandon, Miss. - d. June 21, 2005, Homewood, Ala.), commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps (1975-79).
Wilson, (Charles) Malcolm (b. Feb. 26, 1914, Scarsdale, N.Y. - d. March 13, 2000, New Rochelle, N.Y.), governor of New York (1973-75). He served in the Navy during World War II, seeing action during the Normandy invasion. A conservative Republican, he was Nelson Rockefeller's lieutenant governor for 15 years before stepping into the top spot after Rockefeller resigned in 1973. Wilson ran for governor in his own right in 1974, losing to Democrat Hugh Carey in the post-Watergate backlash that engulfed GOP candidates across the country.
Wilson, Michael (Holcombe) (b. Nov. 4, 1937, Toronto, Ont.), finance minister of Canada (1984-91). In 1979 he was elected to Parliament and was immediately appointed minister of state for international trade in Joe Clark's short-lived Tory government. During the next five years, he served the Progressive Conservative Party as opposition critic for energy, finance, and regional economic expansion. One of Clark's most trusted advisers and firmest supporters, Wilson nonetheless was one of Clark's rivals in the 1983 contest for the leadership of the party. When the Tories were swept back into power under Brian Mulroney's leadership in 1984, Wilson was appointed minister of finance. His attempt to save money by deindexing the government old-age pension ended in a torrent of public opposition. More successful was his proposal to instate a lifetime income tax exemption on the first $100,000 in capital gains earned by an individual. The personal income tax cut, implemented before the 1988 general elections, came too early to be associated with the new federal goods and services tax (GST) proposed in 1989. Negotiations with the provinces to integrate the GST with provincial sales taxes failed, and it was viewed by Canadians merely as a government tax grab. In response to the public outcry, the government lowered the initial tax rate from the proposed 9 to 7% while raising other rates and curtailing some tax credits. In April 1989 Wilson's worst fear became reality: the confidential federal budget was leaked to the press before he was able to present it in the House of Commons. The opposition immediately called for his resignation, but he refused. He explained his failure to make full disclosure of the leak to the Commons by saying that the leak was the subject of a police investigation. In 1991-93 he was minister for international trade, industry, science, and technology.
Wilson, Pete(r Barton) (b. Aug. 23, 1933, Lake Forest, Ill.), governor of California (1991-99). He was elected to the state Assembly in 1966, where he established himself as a moderate with a pro-choice stand on abortion and a record of support for environmental issues; he was minority whip from 1967 to 1969. In 1971, on the heels of a local scandal, Republican officials nominated Wilson for mayor of San Diego, and he reigned over the city during a time of rapid growth. He ran for governor in 1978 and finished fourth in the primary with 9%. In 1982, he ran for senator, won a five-candidate primary with 38%, and beat outgoing Gov. Jerry Brown in the general 52%-45%. In the Senate he established himself as a follower of Pres. Ronald Reagan, in contrast to his previous middle-of-the-road record. In 1988 he was reelected 53%-44%. In 1990 he was elected governor of the nation's largest state, defeating Dianne Feinstein 49%-46%; in 1994 he was reelected 55%-41% over Kathleen Brown after trailing by 23% in the polls. He took pro-choice and some pro-gay rights stands almost for granted, which may be natural for a Californian; but he was exceedingly tough on crime and contemptuous of criminals. Without becoming well-known nationally and without an enthusiastic core constituency, he had considerable influence in national politics, and was entitled to take some satisfaction in welcoming the 1996 Republican National Convention to his chosen home town of San Diego. But not as the party's nominee: on September 29, Wilson withdrew from the presidential race. He had underestimated the resentment among Republican contributors and California voters of his decision to run for president after promising he wouldn't.
Wilson, Roger (Byron) (b. Oct. 10, 1948, Boone County, Mo.), governor of Missouri (2000-01).
Wilson, (Thomas) Woodrow (b. Dec. 28, 1856, Staunton, Va. - d. Feb. 3, 1924, Washington, D.C.), president of the United States (1913-21). As president of Princeton University, he achieved a national reputation by his addresses and articles on political questions of the day, and in 1910 he was offered the Democratic nomination for governor of New Jersey and was elected. His rapid and resounding success brought him into the arena of national politics, and he was nominated as the Democratic presidential candidate in July 1912. The clarity and positive quality of his domestic program won him the leadership of the progressive movement throughout the country. In the election he benefited from a division of the Republican vote between Theodore Roosevelt and William Howard Taft; he won only 42% of the popular vote but a landslide in the electoral college. His first major victory as president was passage of the Underwood Tariff, which reduced customs levies and introduced a federal income tax. This was followed by a broad measure of currency reform - the Federal Reserve Act, signed Dec. 23, 1913. Foreign affairs after July 1914 were dominated by his efforts to protect the rights of the country as a neutral in World War I. He was narrowly reelected in 1916 over Charles Evans Hughes. On April 2, 1917, he asked Congress for a declaration of war against Germany, which was passed by an overwhelming majority. On Jan. 8, 1918, he enumerated the Fourteen Points that he regarded as a basis of a just and lasting peace - including the creation of a "general association of nations." But when he presented the Treaty of Versailles (containing the Covenant of the League of Nations) to the Republican-controlled Senate in 1920, it was not ratified, and the U.S. remained outside the League. In December 1920 he was awarded the 1919 Nobel Peace Prize for his advocacy of the League.
Wilson Hernández, Santiago (b. May 14, 1898, Valparaíso, Chile - d. Jan. 2, 1978, Santiago, Chile), interior minister of Chile (1954). He was also minister of economy and commerce (1953), justice (1953-54, 1955-56), agriculture (1956, acting), and lands and colonization (1956-57).
Wilson of Rievaulx, (James) Harold Wilson, Baron (b. March 11, 1916, Huddersfield, Yorkshire, England - d. May 24, 1995, London, England), prime minister of the United Kingdom (1964-70, 1974-76). At the outbreak of World War II, he was drafted into the civil service. His study of the mining industry, New Deal for Coal (1945), was the basis of the Labour Party's plans for nationalizing the mines. Elected to the House of Commons in 1945, he served as parliamentary secretary to the minister of works (1945-47) and became president of the Board of Trade in 1947 (at 31 the youngest British cabinet minister since 1792), resigning in 1951 in protest against the introduction of National Health Service charges and rearmament policy. In 1954 he became shadow chancellor of the exchequer. He unsuccessfully challenged Hugh Gaitskell for the party leadership in 1960, but after Gaitskell died in 1963, he was elected his successor. He worked to consolidate party unity and led Labour back to power in 1964. He refused to use force against the Rhodesian regime which unilaterally declared independence in 1965, and also kept Britain out of the Vietnam War. He won another election in 1966, but the Conservatives won in 1970. The February 1974 election was inconclusive, but Wilson was asked to form a government in March. This lasted until October, when he won a majority in the year's second general election. By a 1975 referendum on European Economic Community membership, he was able not only to confirm the British role in Europe by an overwhelming majority but also to end a long-running quarrel inside his party. However, economic difficulties continued, and in 1976 he surprised the nation by resigning; he was then knighted. He did not stand for reelection to Parliament in 1983; shortly afterward he was made a life peer.
Wilson of Tillyorn (of Finzean in the District of Kincardine and Deeside and of Fanling in Hong Kong), David (Clive) Wilson, Baron (b. Feb. 14, 1935), governor of Hong Kong (1987-92). He was knighted in 1987 and created a life peer in 1992.
Wilton, Sir Ernest (Colville Collins) (b. Feb. 6, 1870 - d. Dec. 28, 1952, Taunton, England), president of the Commission of Government of the Saarbecken (1927-32); knighted 1923.
Wilton, Sir (Arthur) John (b. Oct. 21, 1921 - d. June 12, 2011), British political officer in Qatar (1949-50) and the Trucial States (1951-52); knighted 1979. He was also ambassador to Kuwait (1970-74) and Saudi Arabia (1976-79).
Wiltshire, Edward Parr (b. Feb. 18, 1910, Gorleston-on-Sea, Norfolk, England - d. July 8, 2004), British diplomat. In 1932 he passed the examination for the consular service and was soon afterwards on his way to Beirut to become a vice consul. In 1935, after a spell at Mosul, he was posted to Baghdad. In 1937-38, he was in Iran, standing in for British consuls on leave from Tabriz and then Ahwaz. After a home leave in England, he was back in Iran in 1939, stationed first in Tehran, later in Kermanshah and Shiraz. Subsequently he was posted to Basra, to the consulate-general in New York, to Cairo as consul in 1947, to Shiraz again in 1949, and to Port Said in 1952. For five years he was then once more in Baghdad, this time as consul, before being posted to Rio de Janeiro in 1957. After serving as political agent in Bahrain in 1959-62, he became consul-general in Geneva in 1963. He returned to London in 1967 to become director of the Diplomatic Service Centre. Throughout his postings he built up a formidable expertise, and an international reputation, in entomology and wrote The Lepidoptera of Iraq (1957).
Win Aung (b. Feb. 28, 1944, Dawei, Burma [now Myanmar] - d. Nov. 4, 2009, Yangon, Myanmar), foreign minister of Myanmar (1998-2004). He was ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany (1990-96), Belgium (1991-96), and the United Kingdom (1996-98). When he was named foreign minister, he had been in the foreign service for about 10 years. He was regarded as a rising star in the military, partly due to his close ties to military strongman Lieut.Gen. Khin Nyunt. In 2004 he was purged along with his boss. While several other officials loyal to Khin Nyunt were also purged, Win Aung was the only one to be imprisoned. He died while under detention at Yangon's notorious Insein prison, where he was sent after his conviction in 2006 for misuse of authority in connection with the sale of an imported car.
Win Maung (b. April 17, 1916, Kyonpyaw, Bassein district, Burma [now Myanmar] - d. July 4, 1989), president of Burma (1957-62). He was also minister of industry and labour (1947-48), transport and communications (1948-56), and ports, marine, civil aviation, and coastal shipping (1956-57).
Winant, John G(ilbert) (b. Feb. 23, 1889, New York City - d. [suicide] Nov. 3, 1947, Concord, N.H.), governor of New Hampshire (1925-27, 1931-35). He was also U.S. ambassador to the United Kingdom (1941-46).
Wingate, Sir (Francis) Reginald, (1st) Baronet (b. June 25, 1861, Port Glasgow, Renfrew, Scotland - d. Jan. 28, 1953, Dunbar, East Lothian, Scotland), governor-general of the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan (1899-1916). Commissioned in the Royal Artillery in 1880, he was seconded to the Egyptian army in 1883 and served in the unsuccessful Khartoum relief expedition of 1884-85. His facility in Arabic secured his transfer in 1887 to the Egyptian army intelligence department of which he became director in 1889. He fought at Toski (1889) and Tokar (1891) against the Mahdists and in 1898 took part in the battles of the Atbara and Omdurman and was present at Gen. Sir Herbert Kitchener's historic meeting with the French commandant, J.B. Marchand, at Fashoda. On Nov. 24, 1899, he finally defeated and killed the Khalifa `Abd Allah, successor to the Mahdi Muhammad Ahmad, at Umm Diwaikarat. In December he became governor-general of the Sudan and sirdar (commander in chief) of the Egyptian army. He nursed the war-shattered country from chaos to sound government, and it proved loyal to Britain and the Allies in World War I. On the outbreak of the revolt in Arabia against Turkish rule in June 1916, Wingate assisted and directed the movement from Khartoum. In January 1917 he became British high commissioner for Egypt. Although in November 1918 he failed to persuade the British government to allow the Egyptian nationalist leaders to plead their cause in London, and was dismissed while on leave in October 1919, subsequent British policy in Egypt followed the lines he had recommended. He was a pasha of Egypt, was first knighted (K.C.M.G.) in 1898, and was made a baronet in 1920.
Wingti, Paias (b. Feb. 2, 1951, Moika village, Western Highlands province, Papua New Guinea), prime minister (1985-88, 1992-94) and foreign minister (1987, 1988) of Papua New Guinea and governor of Western Highlands (1995-97, 2002-07, 2012- ). He was also minister of transport and civil aviation (1978-80), national planning and development (1982-84), and education (1984-85) and deputy prime minister (1982-85).
Winid, Boguslaw (Walenty) (b. Nov. 3, 1960, Warsaw, Poland), Polish diplomat. He has been permanent representative to the United Nations (2014- ).
Winkel, Adrian P(aul) (b. April 19, 1915, Breckenridge, Minn. - d. Nov. 29, 1994), high commissioner of the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands (1977-81).
Winslow, Josiah (b. 1629?, Plymouth colony [now Plymouth, Mass.] - d. Dec. 18, 1680, Marshfield, Plymouth colony), governor of the Plymouth colony (1673-80). The son of Edward Winslow (1595-1655), an original founder (1620) and governor of the Plymouth colony, he was chosen deputy to the General Court from Marshfield in 1643. In 1652, he was appointed commander of the military company of Marshfield, and in 1657, assistant governor of the colony. He was chosen one of the commissioners of the New England confederation in 1658, and reelected for 14 years. In 1659 he was appointed military commander of the colony, succeeding Myles Standish. He tried to prevent Indian uprisings and in 1662 captured Wampanoag leader Wamsutta ("Alexander"), who died soon after questioning. On Sept. 5, 1672, he was one of the six signers of the new articles of confederation of the New England colonies. He was elected governor of Plymouth in 1673, becoming the first native-born governor in New England. In 1674 he established the first public school in the colony. The same year, by his influence, James Cudworth was rescued from the disgrace to which he had been subjected for refusing to sign, as a commissioner, the proceedings against the Quakers. In 1675 he was elected general-in-chief of the whole military forces of New England and signed the declaration of war, made by the commissioners, against Metacom ("King Philip"), brother of Wamsutta. Although he defeated the rebellious Indians in a battle and burned many of their villages, his losses were also high and in February 1676 he relinquished his command to Capt. Benjamin Church due to ill health. He continued as governor of Plymouth, living at Careswell, the family seat in Marshfield. His last public act, on Sept. 5, 1680, was to solicit a charter for Plymouth from the crown.
Winter, Sir James Spearman (b. Jan. 1, 1845, Lamaline, Newfoundland - d. Oct. 8, 1911, Toronto, Ont.), Newfoundland politician. His political career began in 1873, when he was elected member of the House of Assembly for Burin as a supporter of Conservative leader F.B.T. Carter. He was appointed speaker of the house in 1877, two years later was appointed to the cabinet of William V. Whiteway, and in 1882 became solicitor-general. Whiteway's star temporarily faded after the Harbour Grace Affray, a riot which broke out on Dec. 26, 1883, during a parade of the Orange Order; four people were killed. Controversy over Whiteway's handling of the affair led to a coalition of Protestant members on both the government and opposition sides, with factions supporting Winter and A.F. Goodridge vying for its leadership. Eventually, Robert Thorburn was chosen leader of the new Reform party, as a compromise candidate. Winter joined the Thorburn government as attorney-general and headed the successful Reform ticket in the district of Harbour Grace. He was knighted in 1888. In 1889 Whiteway came out of retirement to lead a revitalized Liberal Party, and the entire Thorburn cabinet, including Winter, went down to defeat. In 1892 he reentered politics and was elected in a by-election in Burin. On May 23, 1893, Whiteway had him appointed a justice of the Supreme Court. By 1897 those opposing Whiteway were once again casting about for a leader, and Winter was persuaded to resign from the bench in order to lead the Conservatives. The party won a resounding victory, Winter becoming premier and attorney-general. In 1900 his administration was defeated in a confidence vote. He did not run for reelection in 1900 and in 1904 unsuccessfully attempted a comeback.
Winterton, Sir (Thomas) John (Willoughby) (b. April 13, 1898 - d. Dec. 14, 1987), British high commissioner in Austria (1950) and military governor of the British-U.S. zone of Trieste (1951-54); knighted 1950.
Winthrop, Fitz-John, byname of John Winthrop III (b. March 24, 1638 [March 14, 1637, O.S.], Agawam, Massachusetts Bay Colony [now Ipswich, Mass.] - d. Dec. 8 [Nov. 27, O.S.], 1707, Boston, Massachusetts Bay Colony [now Mass.]), governor of Connecticut (1698-1707); son of John Winthrop, Jr.
Winthrop, John (b. Jan. 22 [Jan. 12, O.S.], 1588, Edwardstone, Suffolk, England - d. April 5 [March 26, O.S.], 1649, Boston, Massachusetts Bay Colony [now Mass.]), governor of Massachusetts Bay (1629-34, 1637-40, 1642-44, 1646-49). He served as justice of the peace and in 1627-29 was an attorney at the Court of Wards and Liveries. He was an English country squire who was ardently religious and became a full-fledged Puritan, convinced that God had elected him to sainthood. He joined the Cambridge Agreement which in 1629 pledged its associates to move to New England if the charter and governing body of the Massachusetts Bay Company could be transferred there. On October 20 he was chosen governor and he sailed the following March in the Arbella, reaching Salem in June with a large party and settling in Boston several months later. He had composed a lay sermon, "A Modell of Christian Charity," in which he pictured the colonists in a special covenant with God, divinely ordained to build "a Citty upon a Hill" in New England. He devoted himself wholeheartedly to the colony. Although somewhat aristocratic (he pointed out that democracy was recommended nowhere in the Scripture), he resisted the efforts of the clergy to control the colony. In the annual elections he was chosen governor 12 times, and when not, was either deputy or assistant governor. In 1634 he took the lead in preparing the colony against possible coercion by England. Rebuked by the clergy for being too lenient with religious dissenters, he grew more severe, siding with the clergy in the controversy about Anne Hutchinson in 1636-38, which ended in her banishment. He was the first president of the Commissioners of the United Colonies of New England, organized in 1643 for defense against the Indians.
Winthrop, John, Jr. (b. Feb. 22 [Feb. 12, O.S.], 1606, Groton, Suffolk, England - d. April 15 [April 5, O.S.], 1676, Boston, Massachusetts Bay Colony [now Mass.]), governor of Connecticut (1657-58, 1659-76); son of John Winthrop. In 1631 he followed his father and emigrated to Boston and was an assistant (member of the governor's council) in 1635, 1640, 1641, and 1644-49. He was a founder of Agawam (now Ipswich, Mass.) in 1633. He went back to England in 1634 and returned the following year as "first governor of the river Connecticut," sending out the party that built the fort at Saybrook. He was again in England in 1641-43 and on his return to Massachusetts established ironworks at Lynn and Braintree. He became magistrate of Connecticut in 1651. In 1657 he was elected governor; he could not be reelected in 1658, as a one-term limit for governors was in effect and he became lieutenant governor. The law was changed as of 1659, and from that year until his death he was annually elected governor of the colony. In 1662 he obtained in England the charter uniting the colonies of Connecticut and New Haven. In 1675 he was further honoured by being chosen a commissioner of the United Colonies of New England. In England he was elected to membership in the newly organized Royal Society.
J. Winthrop, Jr.
Winzer, Otto (b. April 3, 1902, Berlin, Germany - d. March 3, 1975, East Berlin), foreign minister of East Germany (1965-75).
Wirahadikusumah, Umar (b. Oct. 10, 1924, Situraja, Netherlands East Indies [now in Jawa Barat, Indonesia] - d. March 21, 2003, Jakarta, Indonesia), vice president of Indonesia (1983-88). He was chief of the Jakarta army garrison during a murky series of events which led to an abortive coup on Sept. 30, 1965. Suharto, then an army general, used the coup attempt as a pretext for launching a massive attack on the Communist Party - then part of the ruling coalition - and replacing Indonesia's founding president Sukarno. Wirahadikusumah participated in the campaign in which at least 500,000 Communists, trade unionists, and others were killed in army-sponsored massacres throughout Indonesia. Another 300,000 people, including some of Indonesia's top intellectuals, were held for decades without trial on remote prison islands. The U.S. government cooperated closely in the purge, giving the army the names of thousands of suspected leftists, most of whom were subsequently executed.
Wirajuda, (Nur) Hassan (b. July 9, 1948, Tangerang, Jawa Barat, Indonesia), foreign minister of Indonesia (2001-09). He was also ambassador to Egypt (1997-98).
Wirjopranoto, Soekardjo (b. June 5, 1903, Desa Kasugihan, Netherlands East Indies [now in Jawa Tengah, Indonesia] - d. Oct. 23, 1962, New York), Indonesian diplomat. He was minister to the Vatican (1950-52), ambassador to Italy (1952-53) and China (1956-60), and permanent representative to the United Nations (1960-62).
Wirjosandjojo, Sukiman (b. June 19, 1898, Sewu, near Surakarta, Netherlands East Indies [now in Jawa Tengah, Indonesia] - d. July 25, 1974, Yogyakarta, Indonesia), prime minister of Indonesia (1951-52). He was also minister of home affairs (1948-49) and minister of home affairs and health in the emergency government (1949).
Wirth, (Karl) Joseph (b. Sept. 6, 1879, Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany - d. Jan. 3, 1956, Freiburg im Breisgau, West Germany), chancellor of Germany (1921-22). In 1914, as a member of the left wing of the Centre (Roman Catholic) Party, he was elected to the Reichstag and in 1919 to the Weimar National Assembly. In 1920 he became finance minister. After the cabinet of Konstantin Fehrenbach resigned in protest over the heavy reparations imposed by the Versailles Treaty, Wirth took office as chancellor in May 1921 with an avowed policy of the fulfillment of treaty obligations. The decision on the partition of Upper Silesia between Germany and Poland (Oct. 20, 1921) increased the opposition to the fulfillment policy. He resigned on October 22, but resumed office four days later. He sought to establish a "great coalition" which should include all but the Nationalists and the Communists, but failed to secure the support of the Social Democrats and the conservative People's Party, the latter objecting to the appointment of Walther Rathenau as foreign minister. Wirth and Rathenau concluded the German-Russian treaty of friendship at Rapallo (April 16, 1922), which broke Germany's postwar isolation. Unable to carry out the necessary financial measures to stop the depreciation of the mark, he resigned in November 1922. In 1929-30 he served as minister for the territories occupied by the Allies and in 1930-31 as minister of the interior. Retiring in October 1931, he was forced into exile after Adolf Hitler came to power (January 1933), going to Paris and in 1939 to Switzerland. Returning home in 1948, he opposed the West German policy of rearmament and NATO membership, supporting instead a reunited but neutral Germany. In 1955 he received a Stalin Peace Prize.
Wirtz, W(illiam) Willard (b. March 14, 1912, DeKalb, Ill. - d. April 24, 2010, Washington, D.C.), U.S. labor secretary (1962-69).
Wischnewski, Hans-Jürgen (b. July 24, 1922, Allenstein, Germany [now Olsztyn, Poland] - d. Feb. 24, 2005, Cologne, Germany), German politician. A member of the Bundestag from 1957 to 1990, he was minister of economic cooperation and development (1966-68) and Bundesgeschäftsführer (managing director) of the Social Democratic Party (1968-71). Nicknamed "Ben Wisch" for his extensive contacts in the Arab world, he successfully negotiated an end to several hostage crises. Most memorably, he played a key role in ending a 1977 hijacking, in which 86 German passengers were held captive by Palestinian gunmen who diverted their flight to the Somali capital Mogadishu. Wischnewski won the agreement of the Somali government for an elite German commando to intervene, ending the siege. He also helped negotiate the release of a number of hostages in Latin America in the 1980s, most notably in Nicaragua, and facilitated the first secret contacts between Israeli and Palestinian officials, which were eventually to lead to the 1993 Oslo accords. He became a personal friend of Palestinian leader Yasir Arafat. His last official mission for the German government took him to Libya, in April 2004, where he negotiated the resumption of economic ties between the two countries.
Wise, Bob, byname of Robert Ellsworth Wise, Jr. (b. Jan. 6, 1948, Washington, D.C.), governor of West Virginia (2001-05). A Democrat, he was elected to the state Senate in 1980. In 1982, he ran for the 3rd District U.S. House seat (it was renumbered the 2nd in 1992), occupied by a Republican who had won in the Reagan year of 1980. It was widely assumed that the Democratic nominee would win the seat and hold it for a long time, and there was serious competition. But Wise, after just two years in office, beat the state House majority leader and a former Kanawha County sheriff with 45% of the vote and then knocked off the Republican incumbent 58%-42%. In the House, Wise had a generally liberal and often interesting voting record; he supported some conservative policies - repeal of the assault weapons ban, the flag amendment, welfare reform. His biggest legislative success was a 1990 amendment to provide benefits for workers displaced by compliance with the Clean Air Act. In May 1999, he announced that he would run for governor in 2000. Incumbent Republican Cecil Underwood had won in 1996 largely because Democratic nominee Charlotte Pritt was seen as too unfriendly to business and too far to the left. Wise ran with the support of the state's teachers' unions and the United Mine Workers, but sought to avoid a split between labour and business. He had spirited opposition from Jim Lees in the primary, but won 63%-37%. In the general election campaign, Sen. Robert Byrd, who seldom endorsed other candidates, cut a TV spot for Wise and traveled across the state urging West Virginians to vote for him. Byrd's support may have made the difference; Wise defeated Underwood 50%-47%. His political fortunes took a turn for the worse in May 2003 when he admitted to an affair with an employee of the state development office. On August 12, he announced he would not seek a second term.
Wise, Henry A(lexander) (b. Dec. 3, 1806, Drummondtown [now Accomac], Va. - d. Sept. 12, 1876, Richmond, Va.), governor of Virginia (1856-59). He was also U.S. minister to Brazil (1844-47).
Wisner, Frank G(eorge, II) (b. July 2, 1938, New York City), acting U.S. secretary of state (1993). He joined the State Department in December 1961 as a Foreign Service officer. After Western Arabic language training in Morocco, he was assigned to Algiers. In 1964, he was detailed to the Agency for International Development in Vietnam, where he remained until 1968, serving in succession as staff aide to the deputy chief of mission, special assistant to the director of the Office of Civil Operation, and senior advisor to the Vietnamese province of Tuyen Duc. Returning to Washington in December 1968, he was officer in charge of Tunisian affairs in the State Department, and in July 1971 was named chief of the Economic-Commercial Section at the American embassy in Tunis. He then served as chief of the Political Section in Dacca from July 1973 to March 1974. From March 1974 to April 1975, he was director of plans and management in the Bureau of Public Affairs in Washington. He then joined the President's Interagency Task Force on Indochina. He was special assistant to the undersecretary for political affairs, Joseph Sisco, from August 1975 to July 1976. He was named director of the Office of Southern African Affairs in July 1976, then deputy executive secretary of the Department of State in April 1977. He subsequently became ambassador to Zambia (1979-82), Egypt (1986-91), the Philippines (1991-92), and India (1994-97). From July 1992 to January 1993 he served as undersecretary of state for international security affairs and from January 1993 to June 1994 as undersecretary of defense for policy. During the Egyptian revolt of 2011, he was sent as U.S. special envoy to Cairo and defended Pres. Hosni Mubarak, who in his view "must stay in office" to oversee a democratic transition.
Wisnumurti, Nugroho (b. March 23, 1940, Surakarta, Netherlands East Indies [now Indonesia]), Indonesian diplomat. He was permanent representative to the United Nations (1992-97).
Wit, Roel(of Josephus) de (b. March 31, 1927, Amsterdam, Netherlands - d. June 3, 2012, Haarlem, Netherlands), queen's commissioner of Noord-Holland (1976-92). He was also mayor of Alkmaar (1970-76).
Witasse, Pierre (Charles Octave) de (b. Aug. 6, 1878, Senlis, Oise, France - d. Nov. 27, 1956), minister of state of Monaco (1944-48). He was also French minister to Egypt (1934-39).
Witbooi, Hendrik Samuel (b. June 1, 1906 - d. Jan. 18, 1978), chief of the Witbooi Nama (1955-78).
Witkowski, Jacques (b. Jan. 21, 1963, Creusot, Saône-et-Loire, France), prefect of Mayotte (2013-14). He has also been prefect of Manche département (2016- ).
Witos, Wincenty (b. Jan. 22, 1874, Wierzchoslawice, Galicia, Austria-Hungary [now in Poland] - d. Oct. 30, 1945, Kraków, Poland), prime minister of Poland (1920-21, 1923, 1926). Inspired by Boleslaw Wyslouch (1855-1937) and Stanislaw Stojalowski (1841-1911), on whose initiative the Polish Peasant Party was founded in July 1895, he became a deputy in the Galician Sejm (1908-14) and in the Austrian Reichsrat (1911-18). After World War I he was a member of the Polish Sejm (1919-30) and became undisputed leader of his party, which stood for a fair land reform without class hatred. In July 1920, during the crisis of the Russo-Polish War, he formed a government of national unity. Resigning in September 1921, he returned to office in 1923 as head of a National-Peasant coalition which was unable to halt inflation. He became more conservative and formed an exclusively right-of-centre government on May 10, 1926. However, within days he was overthrown by Józef Pilsudski's coup d'état. He then started collaborating with Christian Democrats and Socialists in opposition to Pilsudski. On Sept. 10, 1930, he was arrested and sent to the Brzesc (Brest) prison. Freed on November 27, he was sentenced on Jan. 13, 1932, to 18 months' imprisonment. The Supreme Court on May 9, 1933, quashed the sentence as illegal, but fearing another arrest, he fled to Czechoslovakia on September 28. After the German occupation of Prague (March 1939), he returned to Poland and was arrested, but was soon freed because of his poor health. During World War II he was imprisoned by the Germans in October 1939, authorized to return to Wierzchoslawice in 1941, and arrested by the Soviets in January 1945. Freed a few weeks later, he was invited in June to Moscow to discuss the formation of a Polish government of national unity. He agreed in principle but was too ill to go.
Witte, Graf (Count) Sergey (Yulyevich) (b. June 29 [June 17, O.S.], 1849, Tiflis, Russia [now Tbilisi, Georgia] - d. March 13 [Feb. 28, O.S.], 1915, Petrograd [St. Petersburg], Russia), prime minister of Russia (1905-06). He entered the railway administration and in 1889 was invited to establish a railway department in the Ministry of Finance. He advanced to become minister of communications (February 1892) and then minister of finance (August 1892). He promoted an unparalleled industrial expansion by protective tariffs and government orders, attracted foreign capital by stabilizing the currency and introducing the gold standard, and by various expedients doubled state revenue in ten years. He overestimated the peasants' ability to withstand increased taxation, but his belated efforts to eliminate some of the major impediments to efficient peasant farming met with obstruction from conservative landed interests. He was hated in reactionary circles and Emperor Nikolay II listened with increasing readiness to his enemies, including Interior Minister Vyacheslav Pleve. Witte advocated gradual economic penetration into China, while his nationalist opponents favoured the less subtle tactics of military occupation, and expansion into Korea, which led to war with Japan. In August 1903 he was dismissed as finance minister and relegated to a decorative post of chairman of the Committee of Ministers. He became a count on Oct. 1, 1905. When Russia's defeats provoked a wave of revolutionary violence, he pressed Nikolay to promise representative government and was appointed Russia's first constitutional prime minister. He veered erratically between conciliation and repression, but each success in overcoming the revolutionary threat encouraged the reactionaries to intrigue more openly against him. He was forced to resign in 1906 and spent the rest of his life in the political wilderness.
Witteveen, (Hendrikus) Johannes (b. June 12, 1921, Zeist, Netherlands), finance minister of the Netherlands (1963-65, 1967-71) and managing director of the International Monetary Fund (1973-78).
Wittig, Peter (b. Aug. 11, 1954, Bonn, West Germany), German diplomat. He has been ambassador to Lebanon (1997-99), Cyprus (1999-2002), and the United States (2014- ) and permanent representative to the United Nations (2009-14).
Witting, Rolf Johan (b. Sept. 30, 1879, Viborg, Finland [now Vyborg, Russia] - d. Oct. 11, 1944, Porvoo municipality, Finland), foreign minister of Finland (1940-43). He was also minister of communications and public works (1924-25, 1930-31).
Wlosowicz, Zbigniew (Maria) (b. May 3, 1955, Kraków, Poland), Polish diplomat. He was permanent representative to the United Nations (1993-97).
Wodeyar (Bahadur), Jayachamarajendra (b. July 18, 1919, Chamundi Vihar, Mysore [now Karnataka], India - d. Sept. 23, 1974, Bangalore, Karnataka), maharaja (1940-49), rajpramukh (1947-56), and governor (1956-64) of Mysore and governor of Madras (1964-67).
Woidke, Dietmar (b. Oct. 22, 1961, Naundorf [now part of Forst], East Germany), minister-president of Brandenburg (2013- ).
Wojciechowski, Stanislaw (b. March 15, 1869, Kalisz, Poland, Russian Empire - d. April 9, 1953, Golabki, Poland), president of Poland (1922-26). While a university student in Warsaw, he took part in the Polish Socialist movement, which was also a struggle for Polish independence. Arrested in 1891, he was released the following year and went to Paris, where he was again arrested in 1893. Set free, he went to London, where he helped print the Polish Socialist periodical Przedswit ("The Dawn"). At that time he and Józef Pilsudski were friends. Meanwhile, Wojciechowski studied the cooperative system, and upon returning to Poland in 1906 he devoted himself chiefly to developing cooperative societies. During World War I he saw Germany as Poland's main enemy. In 1915 he went to Moscow, where in 1917 he was elected president of the Council of Polish Parties' Union. He returned to Warsaw in 1918 and in 1919-20 he served as minister of the interior in three successive cabinets of the new Polish Republic. Elected to the Sejm (Diet) as a member of the Polish Peasant Party in November 1922, he was chosen in December to succeed the assassinated Gabriel Narutowicz as president of the republic. Wojciechowski and Pilsudski now had different views, the former supporting parliamentary government, while the latter, then military chief of staff, recommended a more authoritarian regime. In May 1926, Pilsudski staged a successful coup d'état and Wojciechowski resigned and took no further part in politics.
Wojtaszek, Emil (b. Aug. 27, 1927, Kraków, Poland), foreign minister of Poland (1976-80). He was also minister of administration, local economy, and environmental protection (1976).
Wolcott, Oliver (b. Nov. 20, 1726, Windsor, Connecticut - d. Dec. 1, 1797, Litchfield, Conn.), governor of Connecticut (1796-97).
Wolcott, Oliver, Jr. (b. Jan. 11, 1760, Litchfield, Conn. - d. June 1, 1833, New York City), U.S. secretary of the treasury (1795-1800) and governor of Connecticut (1817-27); son of Oliver Wolcott.
Woldetensae, Haile (b. 1947), foreign minister of Eritrea (1997-2000). He was also minister of finance and development (1993-97) and trade and industry (2000-01). He was arrested on Sept. 18, 2001, with 10 other officials after having written in May 2001 an open letter criticizing the concentration of powers in the hands of Pres. Isaias Afewerki and calling for reforms. Officially, they were arrested for "conspiring to overthrow the government, colluding with hostile foreign powers with a view to compromising the sovereignty of the state, undermining Eritrean national security, and endangering Eritrean society and the general welfare of the people."
Wolfensohn, James D(avid) (b. Dec. 1, 1933, Sydney, N.S.W.), president of the World Bank (1995-2005). He helped engineer a number of changes in the bank's philosophy and the way it operates. He pushed to put greater emphasis on "homegrown" development planning, trying to connect the bank closer to the countries it seeks to help. He pushed for debt relief for the world's poorest countries. His 1996 "cancer of corruption" speech focused a new light on corruption as an impediment to development that must be addressed.
Wolff, Alejandro D(aniel) (b. 1956), acting U.S. ambassador to the United Nations (2006-07, 2009). He was also ambassador to Chile (2010-13).
Wolfowitz, Paul (Dundes) (b. Dec. 22, 1943, New York City), president of the World Bank (2005-07). In 1986-89 he was U.S. ambassador to Indonesia. As U.S. deputy defense secretary (2001-05), he was an architect of the Iraq war. His hardline foreign policy stance made him a target of critics at home and abroad. At the World Bank, he campaigned to root out corruption on bank-financed projects but was himself forced to resign after a special bank panel found that he broke bank rules in arranging a hefty pay raise for his girlfriend, a bank employee.
Wolzfeld, Jean-Louis (b. July 5, 1951, Luxembourg), Luxembourg diplomat. He was ambassador to Japan and South Korea (1987-93), the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Iceland (2002-07), Italy and Malta (2007), and the United States and Canada (2012-16) and permanent representative to the United Nations (1993-98).
Wong, Penny, byname of Penelope Ying Yen Wong (b. Nov. 5, 1968, Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia), finance and deregulation minister of Australia (2010-13). She was also minister of climate change and water (2007-10) and climate change, energy efficiency, and water (2010).
Wong Kan Seng, Pinyin Huang Gencheng (b. Sept. 8, 1946, Singapore), foreign minister (1988-94), home affairs minister (1994-2010), and deputy prime minister (2005-11) of Singapore. He was also minister of community development (1986-91).
Wong Pow Nee, (Tan Sri) (b. Oct. 7, 1911, Bukit Mertajam, Penang, Straits Settlements [now in Malaysia] - d. Aug. 31, 2002), chief minister of Penang (1959-69).
Wong So, Claude, chief executive of Rodrigues (2002-04).
Wongsonegoro (b. April 20, 1897, Surakarta, Netherlands East Indies [now Indonesia] - d. March 4, 1978), governor of Jawa Tengah (1945-49). He was also Indonesian minister of interior (1949), justice (1950-51), and education (1951-52) and first vice-premier (1953-54).
Wood, Adam (Kenneth Compton) (b. March 13, 1955), lieutenant governor of the Isle of Man (2011-16). He was British high commissioner to Uganda (2002-05) and Kenya (2005-08).
Wood, Reader Gilson (b. 1821, Highfields, Leicester, England - d. Aug. 20, 1895, Auckland, New Zealand), treasurer of New Zealand (1861-62, 1862-64).
Wood, Robert C(oldwell) (b. Sept. 16, 1923, St. Louis, Mo. - d. April 1, 2005, Boston, Mass.), U.S. secretary of housing and urban development (1969).
Woodbury, Levi (b. Dec. 22, 1789, Francestown, N.H. - d. Sept. 4, 1851, Portsmouth, N.H.), governor of New Hampshire (1823-24) and U.S. secretary of the Navy (1831-34) and treasury (1834-41).
Woodcock, Leonard (Freel) (b. Feb. 15, 1911, Providence, R.I. - d. Jan. 16, 2001, Ann Arbor, Mich.), president (1970-77) of the United Automobile Workers (UAW). He joined a union in 1933 in Detroit, and seven years later the UAW hired him for the staff covering western Michigan. In 1955, he was elected UAW vice president, initially directing the union's agricultural implement and aerospace departments. He then led the union's contract bargaining with General Motors Corp. and the aerospace industry until replacing Walter P. Reuther, who died in a plane crash in 1970. That year, Woodcock led the UAW through a 67-day strike against GM before a contract was reached. In 1977 Pres. Jimmy Carter sent Woodcock as his envoy to Hanoi, and he returned with the remains of 12 U.S. servicemen who had been declared missing in action during the Vietnam War. In 1979-81, Woodcock was ambassador to China. In 1979 he arranged a lengthy Beijing meeting with then-leader Deng Xiaoping for Michigan's top administrators. During a White House event in 2000, Carter credited Woodcock with helping him negotiate terms of normalized diplomatic relations with China, as well as brokering the first trade agreement with the Asian country in 1979. In 1992, Woodcock helped arrange for China to buy cars and trucks from U.S. automakers. He billed the agreement as a first involving U.S. vehicles in the country, which had banned automobile imports since the late 1980s.
Woodford, Sir Alexander George (b. June 15, 1782, London, England - d. Aug. 26, 1870, London), acting lord high commissioner of the Ionian Islands (1832) and lieutenant governor (1835-36) and governor (1836-42) of Gibraltar; knighted 1831.
Woodley, Julian (Carlyle) (b. 1952?), acting administrator of Sint Eustatius (2016- ).
Woodley, William (b. 1728 - d. June 2, 1793), governor of the Leeward Islands (1768-71, 1791-93).
Woodring, Harry H(ines) (b. May 31, 1887, Elk City, Kan. - d. Sept. 9, 1967, Topeka, Kan.), governor of Kansas (1931-33) and U.S. secretary of war (1936-40).
Woolcott, Richard Arthur (b. June 11, 1927, Sydney, N.S.W.), Australian diplomat. He was high commissioner to Ghana (1967-70), ambassador to Indonesia (1975-78) and the Philippines (1978-82), and permanent representative to the United Nations (1982-88).
Woolsey, R(obert) James (b. Sept. 21, 1941, Tulsa, Okla.), CIA director (1993-95).
Woonton, Robert (Philip) (b. Feb. 5, 1949), foreign minister (1999-2004) and prime minister (2002-04) of the Cook Islands. In 2005 he became high commissioner to New Zealand; he was sacked in 2006 as the Cook Islands government accused him of arranging a conspiracy and bringing together MPs to try to overthrow Jim Marurai's government.
Work, Hubert (b. July 3, 1860, Marion Center, Pa. - d. Dec. 14, 1942, Denver, Colo.), U.S. postmaster general (1922-23) and secretary of the interior (1923-28). He was also chairman of the Republican National Committee (1928-29).
Workneh Gebeyehu, (Woldekidan) (b. July 16, 1968, Shashemene, Oromia, Ethiopia), foreign minister of Ethiopia (2016- ). He was also transport minister (2013-16).
Wörner, Manfred (b. Sept. 24, 1934, Stuttgart, Germany - d. Aug. 13, 1994, Brussels, Belgium), secretary-general of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (1988-94). He joined the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) in 1956 and, after being a civil servant from 1957, served as parliamentary adviser to the legislature of the state of Baden-Württemberg in 1962-64. He was elected a member of the Bundestag in 1965, a seat he held until 1988. He was deputy chairman of those members of the Bundestag who belonged to the CDU and the affiliated Christian Social Union (CSU) in 1969-71, chairman of the CDU/CSU's working group on defense in 1972-76, chairman of the Bundestag's committee on defense in 1976-80, and again deputy chairman of the party in the Bundestag in 1980-82. In 1982 the CDU's Helmut Kohl became chancellor and named him defense minister. Known as a hawk, he welcomed the deployment of U.S. Pershing and cruise missiles in Germany and also advocated the strengthening of NATO conventional forces. In 1984, he dismissed a four-star general, Günter Kiessling, because of alleged homosexual contacts. A public outcry followed, and Kiessling was reinstated. In 1987 Kohl advocated Wörner's election as secretary-general of NATO, which took place on December 11 by consensus of the North Atlantic Council, NATO's policy-making body. The first German to hold NATO's top post, he was instrumental in reshaping the 16-nation organization after the collapse of the Soviet bloc - quick to realize that the alliance needed to develop new roles with the end of East-West military tensions. Ironically, it was during his tenure that NATO took its first offensive military action in its 44-year history: in February 1993, U.S. NATO warplanes downed four Bosnian Serb aircraft violating a UN-imposed flight ban over Bosnia-Herzegovina. He died in office.
Wouters, Gielliam Johannes Josephus (b. Feb. 21, 1883, Maastricht, Netherlands - d. March 3, 1973, Mill, Noord-Brabant, Netherlands), governor of Curaçao (1936-42).
Wowereit, Klaus (b. Oct. 1, 1953, Tempelhof district, West Berlin), governing mayor of Berlin (2001-14).
Woyongo, Mark (Owen) (b. June 9, 1946), defense minister (2013-14) and interior minister (2014-16) of Ghana. He was also minister for Upper East region (2009-13).
Wran, Neville (Kenneth) (b. Oct. 11, 1926, Paddington, N.S.W. - d. April 20, 2014, Sydney, N.S.W.), premier of New South Wales (1976-86).
Wrangel af Lindeberg, Erik friherre (b. Aug. 9, 1686, Stockholm, Sweden - d. Jan. 16, 1765, Stockholm), governor of Skaraborg (1727-29) and Örebro (1729-39).
Wrangel af Sauss, (Anton Magnus) Herman greve (b. 1857 - d. 1934), foreign minister of Sweden (1920-21). He was Swedish minister to the Netherlands and Belgium (1900-04), Russia (1904-06), and the U.K. (1906-20).
Wrathall, John (James) (b. Aug. 28, 1913, Lancaster, England - d. Aug. 31, 1978, Salisbury, Rhodesia [now Harare, Zimbabwe]), president of Rhodesia (1976-78). He went to Rhodesia in 1936 and entered politics in 1954 as a member of the United Rhodesia Party. In 1962 he helped found the Rhodesian Front Party and two years later was appointed minister of finance. In this capacity he was instrumental in protecting the country's economy by devising ways to circumvent UN economic sanctions against Rhodesia. He signed the country's declaration of independence in 1965 and in 1966 became Ian Smith's deputy prime minister. He was appointed president in 1976 and died in office.
Wright, Arthur Alban (b. Oct. 24, 1887 - d. Jan. 4, 1967), administrator of Saint Vincent (1936-38) and Saint Lucia (1938-44).
Wright, Jim, byname of James Claude Wright, Jr. (b. Dec. 22, 1922, Fort Worth, Texas - d. May 6, 2015, Fort Worth), U.S. politician. In 1946, at age 23, he was elected to the Texas House of Representatives, but he was not reelected in 1948. In 1950-54 he was mayor of Weatherford, Texas. In 1954 he won election as a U.S. representative from Texas. A vigorous supporter of a strong, activist government, he in 1956 refused to join 100 Southern colleagues in denouncing the U.S. Supreme Court's 1954 desegregation order. He opposed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 but later reversed himself by voting for various other civil rights bills. He was a backer of U.S. involvement in Vietnam and, throughout his career, voted in favour of most social welfare programs. His team play earned him power in the House. Throughout the 1970s and 1980s he raised money and made personal appearances for countless House Democrats running for reelection. His efforts brought him enough support to win the position of majority leader in 1976. By late 1986 he had done so many favours for so many House Democrats that few opposed his succeeding Thomas ("Tip") O'Neill as speaker of the House. In June 1988 Rep. Newt Gingrich of Georgia filed a formal complaint against Wright. After a 10-month inquiry conducted by the House Ethics Committee, a report was released accusing Wright of five counts of violating House rules on the acceptance of gifts and outside income. With a vote of 10-2 the committee decided that several particular bulk sales of his book Reflections of a Public Man appeared to be an attempt at circumventing the House limits on what could be earned in speaking fees. The report also indicated that between 1979 and 1988 he had received $145,000 in gifts from Texas developer George Mallick. On May 31, 1989, he announced his resignation as speaker and as a member of Congress. He was the first House speaker to be driven out of office in midterm.
Wright, Joseph A(lbert) (b. April 17, 1810, Washington, Pa. - d. May 11, 1867, Berlin, Prussia [Germany]), governor of Indiana (1849-57). He was also U.S. minister to Prussia (1857-62, 1865-67).
Wright, Luke E(dward) (b. Aug. 29, 1846, Giles county, Tenn. - d. Nov. 17, 1922, Memphis, Tenn.), governor (1904-05) and governor-general (1905-06) of the Philippines and U.S. secretary of war (1908-09). He was also ambassador to Japan (1906-07).
Wu Bo (b. Aug. 21, 1906 - d. Feb. 21, 2005), finance minister of China (1979-80).
Wu Chaoshu (b. May 23, 1887, Xinhui, Guangdong, China - d. Jan. 2, 1934, Hong Kong), chairman of the government of Guangdong (1931-32).
Wu Den-yih, Pinyin Wu Dunyi (b. Jan. 30, 1948), premier (2009-12) and vice president (2012-16) of Taiwan.
Wu Dingchang (b. April 30, 1884, Huayang, Sichuan, China - d. Aug. 22, 1950, Hong Kong), chairman of the government of Guizhou (1937-45).
Wu Guangxin (b. 1881, Hefei, Anhui, China - d. Nov. 15, 1939, Shanghai, China), governor of Hunan (1920).
Wu Jinglian (b. March 18, 1873, Xingcheng, Liaoning, China - d. Jan. 24, 1944, Tianjin, China), civil governor of Fengtian (1911-12).
Wu Junsheng (b. Nov. 30, 1863, Licheng [now part of Jinan], Shandong, China - d. [in a train blast] June 4, 1928, Huanggutun village [now part of Shenyang], Liaoning, China), governor of Heilongjiang (1921-28).
Wu Peifu (b. April 22, 1873, Penglai, Shandong, China - d. Dec. 4, 1939, Beijing, China), army minister of China (1922).
Wu Qiwei (b. Jan. 28, 1890, Dapu, Guangdong, China - d. July 10, 1953, Beijing, China), chairman of the government of Hunan (1945-46).
Wu Shih-wen, Pinyin Wu Shiwen (b. July 24, 1934, Taishan, Guangdong, China), defense minister of Taiwan (2000-02). He earlier served as commander of the fleet, commander-in-chief of the navy, and vice minister of defense.
Wu Tiecheng (b. April 19, 1888, Zhongshan, Guangdong, China - d. Nov. 19, 1953, Taipei, Taiwan), chairman of the government of Guangdong (1937-38). He was mayor of Shanghai in 1932-37.
Wu Tingfang (b. July 30, 1842, Xinhui, Guangdong, China - d. June 23, 1922), foreign minister (1916-17) and acting premier (1917) of China and governor of Guangdong (1922). He served under the leadership of Li Hongzhang from 1882, and was minister to the United States (1897-1902, 1908-09), also to Peru, Mexico, and Cuba. In 1918 he turned to the Southern government (led by Sun Yat-sen), where he took over the foreign ministry again.
Wu Xueqian (Pinyin), Wade-Giles Wu Hsüeh-ch'ien (b. Dec. 19, 1921, Shanghai, China - d. April 4, 2008), foreign minister of China (1982-88). A close lieutenant of Hu Yaobang, then the leader of the Communist Youth League, Wu led many youth delegations to foreign countries in the 1950s as an official of the League's international liaison department. He was purged during the Cultural Revolution along with other leaders of the League, but he emerged in 1977 as deputy director of the international liaison department of the party's Central Committee and served briefly as deputy foreign minister before becoming foreign minister in November 1982. Speaking few foreign languages and little known in the West before his appointment as foreign minister, Wu became an effective spokesman for China's foreign policies despite a lack of previous diplomatic experience. Amiable but firm on principles, he actively promoted China's image as a nonaligned nation to enhance its influence in the third world. Wu significantly improved China's relations with the two superpowers, the U.S. and the Soviet Union, without entering into an alliance with either. Among other things, he achieved a diplomatic breakthrough in 1984 in his successful negotiations with Britain for the return of Hong Kong to China in 1997.
Wu Zhongxin (b. March 15, 1884, Hefei, Anhui, China - d. Dec. 16, 1959, Taipei, Taiwan), chairman of the government of Anhui (1932-33), Guizhou (1935-36), and Xinjiang (1944-46).
Wulff, Christian (Wilhelm Walter) (b. June 19, 1959, Osnabrück, Niedersachsen, Germany), minister-president of Niedersachsen (2003-10) and president of Germany (2010-12).
Wunna Maung Lwin (b. May 30, 1952, Thaton, Burma [now Myanmar]), foreign minister of Myanmar (2011-16); son of Maung Lwin. He was ambassador to Israel (2000-01), France (2001-05; also accredited to the Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, Spain, and the European Union), and Belgium (2006-07).
Wurth, Hubert (b. April 15, 1952, Luxembourg, Luxembourg), Luxembourg diplomat. He has been ambassador to the Soviet Union, Finland, Poland, and Mongolia (1988-91), the Netherlands (1992-98), France (2003-07), the United Kingdom (2007-11), and Austria (2011- ) and permanent representative to the United Nations (1998-2003).
Wurth, Pierre (b. June 6, 1926, Luxembourg), Luxembourg diplomat. He was permanent representative to the United Nations (1964-68) and ambassador to the Soviet Union and Poland (1968-71), Belgium (1977-84), and France (1984-87).
Wyche, Sir Cyril (b. c. 1632 - d. Dec. 29, 1707), joint acting lord lieutenant of Ireland (1700-01).
Wyn-Harris, Sir Percy (b. Aug. 24, 1903, London, England - d. Feb. 25, 1979, Petersfield, Hampshire, England), British colonial administrator. A mountaineer, he climbed to within 300 m of the summit of Mt. Everest with L.R. Wager in the British 1933 expedition, a height unsurpassed until Sir John Hunt's successful expedition of 1953. He also helped to advance guideless climbing in the Alps and, with Eric Shipton, scaled the twin peaks of Mt. Kenya in 1929. After World War II Wyn-Harris turned to sailing and during 1962-69 circumnavigated the globe in his 12-ton sloop Gunning Grundel. As a Colonial Service administrator in Kenya from 1926 he furthered his work by humane common sense and red-tape cutting, spiced with humour. From 1949 to 1958 he was governor of Gambia and in 1960-61 administrator of Northern Cameroons. He was knighted in 1952.
Wyndham, Thomas Wyndham, (1st) Baron (b. Dec. 27, 1681 - d. Nov. 14, 1745), joint acting lord lieutenant of Ireland (1730-31). He was created Baron Wyndham Sept. 18, 1731; the peerage became extinct on his death.
Wynn, Will(iam Patrick) (b. Sept. 10, 1961, Beaumont, Texas), mayor of Austin (2003-09).
Wynne, Kathleen (O'Day) (b. May 21, 1953, Richmond Hill, Ont.), premier of Ontario (2013- ). She is the province's first female and Canada's first openly gay premier.
Wynns, Mahala (Kathleen) (b. Oct. 4, 1948, Grand Turk island, Turks and Caicos Islands), acting governor of the Turks and Caicos Islands (2005, 2008). She was chief secretary (2005-06) and deputy governor (2006-09).
Wyss, Edmund (b. Dec. 21, 1916 - d. Aug. 17, 2002), president of the government of Basel-Stadt (1962-63, 1967-68, 1973-74, 1980-81).
Wyzner, Eugeniusz (b. Oct. 31, 1931, Chelmno, Poland), acting foreign minister of Poland (1995). He was also permanent representative to the United Nations (1981-82, 1998-99).