George H. W. Bush (1924–2018) served as the 41st president of the United States from 1989 to 1993. He is best known for his leadership of an international coalition during the Persian Gulf War (1990–1991).
Born into a prominent and well-connected family, Bush was educated in private schools. Later, he attended Yale University. While at Yale, he was a member of the secretive Skull and Bones society.
He served as a combat pilot during World War II, and he was decorated for bravery. Later, he refused a position in his father's company and moved to Texas to work in the oil business.
By the 1960s, he had started a political career as a Republican. After serving in the US House of Representatives, he became ambassador to the United Nations and head of the CIA. He ran for the presidency in 1980 and became Ronald Reagan's vice president (1981–1989).
After Reagan's two terms, Bush became president. He ably led the US during the end of the Cold War. In addition, he fought a successful war against Iraq, which had occupied Kuwait.
On the domestic front, he oversaw the passage of the Clean Air Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act. When he was nominated in 1988, he had said: "Read my lips: No new taxes." When a tax increase was later passed, it was a blow to his prestige. The economy struggled during his term.
He lost the 1992 presidential race to Bill Clinton. After leaving the White House, he stayed out of the public eye—apart from helping with disaster relief. His son later served two terms as president (2001–2009).