Skip to main content
Historical Biography

Attorney General: Alberto R. Gonzales

Gonzales, Alberto R.
80th Attorney General, -
Download Image

Alberto R. Gonzales was born on August 4, 1955 in San Antonio, Texas. He received his B.A. from Rice University in 1979 and his J.D. from Harvard Law School in 1982.

Mr. Gonzales served in the United States Air Force from 1973 to 1975 and attended the United States Air Force Academy between 1975 and 1977. From 1982 to 1995, Mr. Gonzales was in private practice at the law firm of Vinson & Elkins L.L.P. in Houston, Texas where he became a partner. In 1995, he became the general counsel of Governor George W. Bush, serving in that capacity until 1997. Governor Bush appointed him to the position of Secretary of State from December 1997 to January 1999. Additionally, Mr. Gonzales was a Justice on the Supreme Court of Texas from January 1999 to December 2000. After Mr. Bush became president, he appointed Mr. Gonzales as White House counsel in 2001. Mr. Gonzales held this position until becoming attorney general in 2005.

Mr. Gonzales was on the board of directors of the United Way of the Texas Gulf Coast and President of Leadership Houston from 1993 to 1994. Additionally, he was elected to the American Law Institute in 1999. He was on the Board of Trustees of the Texas Bar Foundation from 1996 to 1999 and the board of directors for the State Bar of Texas from 1991 to 1994. Mr. Gonzales was the president of the Houston Hispanic Bar Association from 1990 to 1991.

Mr. Gonzales was named Latino Lawyer of the Year, Hispanic National Bar Association in 1999. He was inducted into the Hispanic Scholarship Fund Alumni Hall of Fame in 2003. Also in 2003, he was honored with the Good Neighbor Award from the United States-Mexico Chamber of Commerce and received the President’s awards from the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the League of United Latin American Citizens.

Mr. Gonzales was sworn in as the nation’s 80th and first Hispanic attorney general on February 3, 2005. His resignation took effect on September 17, 2007, after serving two years as attorney general.

About the Artist: Dean L. Paules

Dean Paules was born and raised in Pennsylvania and studied electronics at Rehrig Technical School in Baltimore, Maryland. He began his full-time commitment to portraiture in 1987 after selling his successful plastics molding firm. Paules received the John Howard Sanden award for Excellence in Portrait Painting at the National Portrait Seminar in 1991. His resume includes portraits of many distinguished Americans. He painted Attorney General Gonzales' portrait in 2008.

Updated October 25, 2022