Peter du Pont has served as a State Legislator, Congressman, Governor of Delaware, and, in 1988, was a candidate for the President of the United States. He currently is a director in the Washington law firm of Richards, Layton and Finger.
Also, following his presidential quest, Governor du Pont created an organization called Ideas for America’s Future as a means for the continued development of the ideas that formed the basis for his presidential campaign.
Throughout his career, Governor du Pont has addressed a wide range of critical issues—from foreign policy to tax reduction, deregulation, youth unemployment and the quality of education in our schools. During the 1988 campaign, his focus on these critical issues earned him a reputation as a man with a long-range vision and the courage to speak the truth.
In 1976, Governor du Pont won a landslide victory against Delaware’s incumbent Democratic governor, and was re-elected to a second term with a record 71 percent of the vote.
Particularly during his second term, Governor du Pont made public education a top priority for his administration. He established an alternative curriculum called “Basic Plus,” which stressed fundamental skills in reading, writing and mathematics for elementary and junior high classes. He called for an upgrading of science and math requirements, including courses in the fundamentals of computer science.
A leader in the debate on how to improve education, in 1984 he served as Chairman of the Education Commission of the States, a national group whose charter is to make recommendations that deal with all facets of American education.
In 1985, Governor du Pont was named chairman of the Hudson Institute, one of the nation’s premier think tanks that focuses on meeting the challenges of leadership in the future. He remains a member of its Board of Trustees.
After receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in engineering from Princeton University, he served as a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy before attaining a doctor of law degree from Harvard and joining the Du Pont Company at its Wilmington, Delaware headquarters. He later was elected three times to Delaware’s General Assembly and served six years in the U.S. House of Representatives.
He and his wife, Elsie, are the parents of four children.