United States Postmaster General
|Postmaster General of the United States|
Chief Executive Officer of the United States Postal Service
|United States Postal Service|
|Appointer||Board of Governors|
|Inaugural holder||Benjamin Franklin|
|Deputy||Ronald A. Stroman|
The Postmaster General of the United States is the chief executive officer of the United States Postal Service. The office, in one form or another, is older than both the United States Constitution and the United States Declaration of Independence. Benjamin Franklin was appointed by the Continental Congress as the first Postmaster General in 1775, serving just over 15 months.
The Cabinet post of Postmaster General was often given to a new President's campaign manager or other key political supporter, and was considered something of a sinecure. The Postmaster General was in charge of the governing party's patronage, and was a powerful position which held much influence within the party.
In 1971, the Post Office Department was re-organized into the United States Postal Service, an independent agency of the executive branch. Therefore, the Postmaster General is no longer a member of the Cabinet and is no longer in Presidential succession.
Postmasters General under the Continental Congress
|Benjamin Franklin||July 26, 1775|
|Richard Bache||November 7, 1776|
|Ebenezer Hazard||January 28, 1782|
Postmasters general over the U.S. Post Office Department, 1789–1971
As non-Cabinet department, 1789–1829
|Name||State of Residence||Date appointed||President(s) served under|
|Samuel Osgood (pictured right)||Massachusetts||September 26, 1789||Washington|
|Timothy Pickering||Pennsylvania||August 12, 1791||Washington|
|Joseph Habersham||Georgia||February 25, 1795||Washington, Adams, Jefferson|
|Gideon Granger||Connecticut||November 28, 1801||Jefferson, Madison|
|Return J. Meigs, Jr.||Ohio||March 17, 1814||Madison, Monroe|
|John McLean||Ohio||June 26, 1823||Monroe, J. Q. Adams|
As cabinet department, 1829–1971
Postmasters General over the U.S. Postal Service, 1971–present
|Winton M. Blount||July 1, 1971|
|E. T. Klassen||January 1, 1972|
|Benjamin F. Bailar||February 16, 1975|
|William F. Bolger||March 15, 1978|
|Paul N. Carlin||January 1, 1985|
|Albert Vincent Casey||January 7, 1986|
|Preston Robert Tisch||August 16, 1986|
|Anthony M. Frank||March 1, 1988|
|Marvin Travis Runyon||July 6, 1992|
|William J. Henderson||May 16, 1998|
|John E. Potter||June 1, 2001|
|Patrick R. Donahoe||January 14, 2011|
|Megan Brennan||February 1, 2015|
Living former Postmasters General
As of July 2016, there are seven living former Postmasters General, the oldest being W. Marvin Watson (1968–1969, born 1924). The most recent Postmaster General to pass away was Preston Robert Tisch (1986–1988), on November 15, 2005.
|Name||Term of office||Date of birth|
|W. Marvin Watson||1968–1969||June 6, 1924|
|Benjamin F. Bailar||1975–1978||April 21, 1934|
|Paul N. Carlin||1985–1986||August 25, 1931|
|Anthony M. Frank||1988–1992||May 31, 1931|
|William J. Henderson||1998–2001||June 16, 1947|
|John E. Potter||2001–2010||1956 (age 59–60)|
|Patrick R. Donahoe||2011–2015||c. 1955 (age 60–61)|
- Postmaster General (disambiguation)
- John Henninger Reagan, the only Postmaster General of the Confederate States of America
- O'Keefe, Ed (May 10, 2011). "Salaries of top Postal Service executives revealed". Washington Post. Retrieved 5 September 2011.
- Publication 100 – The United States Postal Service: An American History 1775–2006. United States Postal Service, May 2007. Also available in PDF format.
- Michael B. Sauter and Jon C. Ogg. "The 10 Highest-Paid Government Jobs". 24/7WallSt.com. Retrieved 5 September 2011.
- Since July 1, 1971, the Postmaster General has been appointed by and serves under the Board of Governors of the United States Postal Service.
- Official site
- Papers of Arthur E. Summerfield, Postmaster General, 1953–1961, Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library