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Charles B. "Bud" Wilkinson

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The Presidential historical materials of Charles B. "Bud" Wilkinson are in the custody of the National Archives and Records Administration under the provisions of Title I of the Presidential Recordings and Materials Preservation Act of 1974 (44 U.S.C. 2111 note) and implementing regulations. In accordance with the act and regulations, archivists reviewed the file group to identify personal and private materials (including materials outside the date span covered by the act) as well as nonhistorical items. These materials have been returned to the individual who has primary proprietary interest.

Materials covered by the Act have been archivally processed and are described in this register. Items which are security classified or otherwise restricted under the act and regulations have been removed and placed in a closed file. A Document Withdrawal Record (GSA Form 7279 or NA Form 14021) with a description of each restricted document has been inserted at the beginning of each folder from which materials have been removed. A Document Control Record marks the original position of the withdrawn item. Employees of the National Archives will review periodically the unclassified portions of closed materials for the purpose of opening those which no longer require restriction. Certain classified documents may be declassified under authority of Executive Order 13526 in response to a Mandatory Review Request (NA Form 14020) submitted by the researcher.

  • Linear feet of materials:   31.5
  • Approximate number of pages:   62,500

Biographical Note

April 23, 1916 Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota

1937 Graduated from University of Minnesota

1937-1940 Assistant football coach at Syracuse University (also coached golf and hockey)

1940 M.A. in English, Syracuse University

1941 Football coach at the University of Minnesota

1942-1945 Coach with the Navy Pre-Flight School Seahawks in Iowa; U.S. Navy Officer and hangar deck officer aboard the aircraft carrier Enterprise in the Pacific theatre during World War II

1945-1947 Assistant football coach at the University of Oklahoma

1947-1964 Head football coach at the University of Oklahoma

1961-1964 Served as part-time director of President Kennedy's Council on Physical Fitness (resigned shortly after Lyndon B. Johnson took office)

1964 Resigned from coaching at the University of Oklahoma in January

1964 Changed party affiliation to Republican on February 5, 1964

1964 Ran for U.S. Senate (Republican) seat from Oklahoma; defeated by Fred R. Harris (Democrat)

1964 Legally changed his name during Senate campaign to include Bud - the nickname by which he was generally known

1965-1969 Served as President of Lifetime Sports Foundation

1965-1977 ABC television sports analyst

January 9, 1969 President-elect Nixon named Wilkinson a Special Consultant, while permitting Wilkinson to continue to work as a television sports analyst

1969-1971 Special consultant to President Nixon

1970 Republican National Committeeman for Oklahoma

1971 Departed White House staff

1978-1979 Head coach of the St. Louis Cardinals of the National Football League

February 9, 1994 Died of congestive heart failure at age 77 in St. Louis, MO

Married August 29, 1938 to the former Mary Shifflett of Grinnell, Iowa; two sons, Pat and Jay. Divorced in 1975. Married to the former Donna O'Donnohue in 1976.

Scope and Content Note

The Charles B. "Bud" Wilkinson file group reflects his responsibilities as Special Consultant to the President from January 1969 to January 1971. Mr. Wilkinson was hired as a per-diem consultant and was provided with a support staff. At the time of his appointment, Mr. Wilkinson was well-known as a former University of Oklahoma football coach and current sports analyst for the ABC network college football telecasts. The per-diem arrangement allowed him to continue as a television sports analyst while serving the Administration at the President's direction.

His first assignment was to review 1,500 to 1,800 Federal non-regulatory boards and commissions and make recommendations on improving their effectiveness. Due to this public prominence, Mr. Wilkinson was given the responsibility for articulating, through personal and television appearances, the Administration position on matters of public interest. He was also responsible for arranging press conferences and public relations appearances by Department and Agency heads and members of the President's staff. His public relations responsibilities also included assisting the President in receiving visiting dignitaries and other prominent persons and accompanying the President to sports events.

In addition to the review of the Federal boards and commissions, his duties covered a wide range of activities such as overall responsibility for the Sunday White House church services from 1969 to 1970, which included the selection of clergymen. The responsibility for the White House Church services was turned over to Constance Stuart in 1970. He served as liaison to the Advertising Council, the American Red Cross, the President's Committee on Employment of the Handicapped and the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports. He represented the White House on the American Revolution Bicentennial Commission and the U.S. Olympic Committee. He served as Vice-chairman of the President's Council on Youth Opportunity dealing with youth affairs and Chairman of an interdepartmental ad hoc committee on drug abuse. President Nixon appointed him president of the National Center for Voluntary Action, a privately funded, non-profit, non-partisan organization. Also in the area of youth affairs he worked on the 1970 White House Conference on Children and Youth and worked on improving the executive intern and White House intern programs. Staff members reassigned to Mr. Wilkinson from other areas were James D. Atwater, Staff Assistant to the President, Jeffrey E. Donfeld, Staff Assistant to the President, John L. Campbell from the Executive Office of the President, Domestic Council and William B. Mullins, from the Office of Economic Development/VISTA.

Series Description

Boxes:   1-14
Series:   Chronological Files | Folder Title List
Spans:   1969-1971
Description:   Contains White House reading file [1969-1971] The file is arranged in two sub series, boxes 1-4 are arranged chronologically; boxes 5-14 are arranged alphabetically by surname and thereunder chronologically.

Boxes:   15-23
Series:   Administrative Files | Folder Title List
Spans:   1969-1971
Description:   Consists of memoranda to and from White House Staff as well as biographical information on staff personnel for the period 1969-1971. Also contained in this file series are memos to the President; information on White House speaking engagements; speech materials; White House Church services; reports on various commissions, committees and conferences. The file is arranged alphabetically by staff member name and thereunder chronologically.

Boxes:   24-51
Series:   Subject Files | Folder Title List
Spans:   24-51
Description:   Contains materials relating to various programs. Some of these programs concern the Advertising Council, Drug Abuse; White House Church services; the President's Committee on Employment of the Handicapped; Girl Scout materials; Youth programs; Presidential Scholars and Presidential Interns. This series is arranged alphabetically by program title and thereunder chronologically.

Boxes:   52-72
Series:   Publication Files | Folder Title List
Description:   This series includes miscellaneous reports, Committee hearings on a variety of domestic programs, government printing office publications and Republican National Committee publications. The boxes are arranged alphabetically by subject area. Box 69 in its entirety has been transferred to the audio-visual unit of the Nixon Presidential Materials Staff. Boxes 70, 71 and 72 are oversize attachments to the file.

Photographs, sound recordings and movie films have been transferred from Wilkinson's files to the audio-visual unit.

Folder Title List

Available as a searchable Adobe Acrobat PDFpdf file.

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