Warren Randolph Burgess

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Warren Randolph Burgess
4th United States Permanent Representative to NATO
In office
1957 – March 23, 1961
Appointed by Dwight D. Eisenhower
Preceded by George Walbridge Perkins, Jr.
Succeeded by Thomas K. Finletter
Personal details
Born (1889-05-07)May 7, 1889
Newport, Rhode Island, U.S.
Died September 16, 1978(1978-09-16) (aged 89)
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Nationality American
Political party Republican
Children 2
Alma mater Brown University
McGill University
Columbia University

Warren Randolph Burgess (May 7, 1889 – September 16, 1978)[1] was an American banker and diplomat who served as the U.S. Ambassador to NATO from 1957 to 1961.[2]

Early life

Burgess was born in Newport, Rhode Island (where his father was teaching at the Rogers High School) and grew up in the Chicago, Illinois area. He was the son of Isaac Bronson Burgess, a Philips Exeter Academy and Brown University graduate who was a teacher,[3] and Ellen (née Wilber) Burgess, an Abbot Academy graduate.[4] His elder brother was Robert Wilbur Burgess (b. 1887), who served as Director of the United States Census Bureau from 1953 to 1961.[3]

Burgess attended Brown University and joined the Delta Upsilon Fraternity.[5] He did graduate work at McGill University in Montreal and earned a doctorate from Columbia University in 1920. His dissertation at Columbia was entitled "Trends of School Costs."[6]


He became a prominent banker in New York City. In 1920, as a statistician, he joined the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and remained with the bank for 19 years until he resigned in 1938 as vice president in charge of the Banks government security operation.[6] In 1927, he published "The Reserve Banks and the Money Markets."[6] In 1938, he joined National City Bank of New York (now known as Citibank) becoming vice chairman of the board of directors; later becoming chairman of the Bank's executive committee.[6]

He was elected President of the American Bankers Association and served in that role until 1945, when he was succeeded by Frank C. Rathje. In 1930, he was elected as a Fellow of the American Statistical Association.[7]

Public service

In 1953, Dwight D. Eisenhower appointed Burgess deputy to the United States Secretary of the Treasury George M. Humphrey and Burgess settled in Washington. The following year in 1954, he was appointed Undersecretary of the Treasury, again by Eisenhower.[6]

In 1957, Eisenhower appointed Burgess to succeed George Walbridge Perkins, Jr. as the United States Permanent Representative to NATO (the North Atlantic Treaty Organization), and he served in this role until 1961 when John F. Kennedy was elected President and appointed Thomas K. Finletter as his replacement.

Personal life

In 1917, he married Dr. May Ayres (1888–1953), director of nursing education and a statistician. Together, they were the parents of two sons:[6]

  • Leonard Randolph Burgess, an author.[8][9]
  • Julian Ayres Burgess (1921–2008), a former aerospace engineer who married illustrator and painter Virginia McIntyre in 1951.[10]

After the death of his first wife and while he was serving as the Undersecretary of the Treasury for Monetary Affairs, he married Helen Morgan Hamilton (1896–1985), granddaughter of banker J.P. Morgan and widow of Arthur Hale Woods on March 5, 1955. During the war, she served in the Women's Army Corp, rising to the rank of Lt. Colonel.[11][12][13]

Burgess died at his home in Washington, D.C. on September 16, 1978.[6][1] His widow later died on January 25, 1985 in Mystic, Connecticut.[14][15][16]


  1. ^ a b Times, Special To The New York (6 November 1978). "OBITUARIES | Eisenhower Administration Official". The New York Times. Retrieved 18 May 2017.
  2. ^ Blair, W. Granger (4 September 1959). "PRESIDENT GIVES NATO ASSURANCE; Stresses U.S. Support for Alliance in a Speech on Visit to Headquarters". The New York Times. Retrieved 18 May 2017.
  3. ^ a b School, Dedham (Mass ) High (1889). Historical Catalogue of the Dedham High School, Teachers and Students, 1851-1889. H. H. McQuillen. p. 115. Retrieved 30 May 2018.
  4. ^ McKeen, Philena (1897). Sequel to Annals of Fifty Years: A History of Abbot Academy. Andover, Mass., 1879-1892. Warren F. Draper. p. 72. Retrieved 30 May 2018.
  5. ^ Young, Ralph A. Warren Randolph Burgess, 1889–1978. The American Statistician, Vol. 33, No. 3 (Aug., 1979), p. 136
  6. ^ a b c d e f g Smith, J. Y. (18 September 1978). "Banker-Economist W.R. Burgess Dies, Ex-Treasury Aide, NATO Ambassador". Washington Post. Retrieved 30 May 2018.
  7. ^ View/Search Fellows of the ASA, accessed 2016-07-23.
  8. ^ Burgess, Leonard Randolph (1968). Wage and salary administration in a dynamic economy. Harcourt, Brace & World. Retrieved 30 May 2018.
  9. ^ Holland, Daniel M. (1964). "Review of Top Executive Pay Package". Political Science Quarterly: 129–133. doi:10.2307/2146585. JSTOR 2146585.
  10. ^ "Julian Ayres Burgess". Greenwich Time. June 29, 2008. Retrieved 30 May 2018.
  11. ^ Times, Special To The New York (22 February 1955). "W. Randolph Burgess, Treasury Of fleet, Will Many Mrs. Arthur Woods M". The New York Times. Retrieved 18 May 2017.
  12. ^ "MONEY SITUATION GOOD DR. BURGESS DECLARES; Federal Reserve Official Talks to Credit Men--Circulation Down $150,000,000". The New York Times. 18 March 1930. Retrieved 18 May 2017.
  13. ^ "Burgess on Advisory Council". The New York Times. 4 January 1947. Retrieved 18 May 2017.
  14. ^ "Helen H. Burgess Dies at 88; Historic Preservation Leader". The New York Times. 28 January 1985. Retrieved 18 May 2017.
  15. ^ "Helen Hamilton Burgess, the great-great-granddaughter of American revolutionary Alexander..." UPI. January 26, 1985. Retrieved 18 May 2017.
  16. ^ "Helen Burgess, Was WAC Aide During WW II". The Washington Post. 28 January 1985. Retrieved 18 May 2017.

External links

  • Warren Randolph Burgess at Find a Grave
  • Papers of W. Randolph Burgess, Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library
  • Preliminary Inventory to the W. Randolph Burgess Papers, 1913–1978
  • Collection of Works from W. Randolph Burgess
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
George W. Perkins
U.S. Ambassador to NATO
Succeeded by
Thomas K. Finletter
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