Nov 8 (Reuters) – Here are five facts about Robert Gates, 63, who was named on Wednesday by President George W. Bush to replace Donald Rumsfeld as U.S. secretary of defense.
* Served as director of the Central Intelligence Agency from 1991 until 1993. He was the only career officer in CIA history to rise from entry-level employee to director of central intelligence. Joined the CIA in 1966.
* Recently has been deeply involved in bipartisan discussions on Iraq as member of Iraq Study Group headed by former Secretary of State James Baker. The group is expected by the end of the year to issue alternative ideas for a way forward in Iraq.
* First nominated as CIA director in 1987 by President Ronald Reagan but withdrew amid questions over his and the CIA’s role in the secret sales of arms to Iran and the diversion of profits to Nicaragua’s contra rebels. In hearings in 1991 Gates admitted mistakes and said he should have done more to get at the truth.
* Served as deputy director of Central Intelligence from 1986 to 1989 and as deputy national security adviser for President George Bush at the White House from 1989 until 1991.
* A Kansas native and son of former Secretary of Defense Thomas Gates who served under President Dwight Eisenhower from 1959 to 1961.