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date: 20 September 2020

O'Leary, Hazel Rollins locked

1937American public official, first female secretary of energy.
  • Robert Fay


Born in Newport News, Virginia, Hazel O'Leary was raised by her father, Russell E. Reid, a physician, and by her stepmother. She earned a B.A. degree from Fisk University in Nashville, Tennessee in 1959, and a J.D. degree from Rutgers University Law School in 1966.

From 1974 to 1980, O'Leary worked in the Federal Energy Administration (later part of the Department of Energy), reaching the position of chief of the Economic Regulatory Administration. She worked at her own energy consulting firm from 1980 to 1989. She was president of Northern States Power Company in 1993, when President Bill Clinton appointed her secretary of energy, a position she held until 1996.

In addition to her position as president of O Leary and Associates a consulting firm O Leary also serves as trustee on several boards including those of Morehouse College Africare the AES ...

A version of this article originally appeared in Africana: The Encyclopedia of the African and African American Experience.

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