Friday, October 31, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Martin Hoffmann | Ex-secretary of Army, 82

Martin Hoffmann, 82, a lawyer and onetime enlisted soldier who became secretary of the Army and helped guide the service through a high-profile cheating scandal at the West Point military academy in the mid-1970s, died July 14 at a hospital in Warrenton, Va.

The cause was complications from cancer, said his wife, Margaret Hoffmann.

Mr. Hoffmann enlisted in the Army in 1954, received his commission after Officer Candidate School and served in the 101st Airborne Division. He later joined the Army Reserve and pursued legal training.

He was working as a lawyer in 1971 when President Richard Nixon named James Schlesinger chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission. Schlesinger hired Mr. Hoffmann as the commission's general counsel, or chief legal officer. When Schlesinger became Nixon's defense secretary in 1973, he took Mr. Hoffmann with him as a special assistant.

Gerald Ford, who became president in 1974 after Nixon's resignation amid the Watergate scandal, named Mr. Hoffmann secretary of the Army. He held the post from August 1975 until shortly after President Jimmy Carter took office in 1977.

As the Army's senior civilian leader, Mr. Hoffmann helped the service continue the transition to an all-volunteer force that began with the abolition of the draft in 1973. He also helped oversee the development and acquisition of major weapons systems such as Abrams tanks, Bradley infantry fighting vehicles, and Apache helicopters, said Raymond DuBois, a longtime aide who is now a senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

After his tenure as Army secretary, Mr. Hoffmann went back to legal work. - Washington Post

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