- Hopkins, Harry Lloyd
- (1890-1946)Famous New Deal administrator Harry Hopkins was educated at Grinnell College. In 1912, he moved to New York City, where he became a social worker. He became executive secretary of New York’s Board of Child Welfare and during World War I was involved in civilian relief for the families of servicemen for the Red Cross. In 1923, Hopkins became president of the American Association of Social Workers and in 1924 director of the New York Tuberculosis Association. In 1931, he was appointed by Governor Franklin D. Roosevelt to direct New York’s Temporary Emergency Relief Administration and then in 1933 to head the Federal Emergency Relief Administration, which spent $1 billion in two years providing jobs for the unemployed.When initial relief measures proved too slow, Roosevelt put Hopkins in charge of the Civil Works Administration, which employed 4 million people in six months working on public building projects. From 1935 to 1940 Hopkins directed the Works Progress Administration, which put more than 8 million workers on the federal payroll and spent $10.5 billion. He became secretary of commerce in 1938 and considered running for the presidential nomination in 1940. However, ill health forced him to abandon such ambitions, and he supported Roosevelt before resigning from the administration. During World War II, Hopkins became a diplomat. He was first sent as a special envoy to Great Britain in 1941 and then to the Soviet Union. He organized Lend-Lease to the Allies before the United States entered the war and after 1941 headed the Munitions Assignments Board to allocate war material to different Allied powers. Hopkins continued to work in the war administration despite poor health and the death of a son in combat. He was an influential figure at the Tehran Conference in 1943 and the Yalta Conference in 1945, and he played a part in ensuring Soviet participation in the San Francisco Conference that established the United Nations in 1945. That same year Hopkins resigned from government and was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal.
Historical Dictionary of the Roosevelt–Truman Era . Neil A. Wynn . 2015.