July 21, 1988: Massachusetts Governor, Michael S. Dukakis becomes first Greek-American to be nominated for the U.S. Office of the President.
Born to Greek immigrant parents in 1933 in Massachusetts, Dukakis became the 65th Governor of the State, being the second Greek-American governor in the United States, after Spiro T. Agnew. He was a graduate of Swarthmore College and was accepted to Harvard Law School, but chose to join the United States Army where he served in South Korea. After his military service, he did receive his J.D. degree from Harvard Law School in 1960 and quickly began his political career.
He was a State Representative for Massachusetts for four years and was elected governor in 1974. As governor, he hosted President Gerald Ford and Queen Elizabeth during their visit to Boston for the United States Bicentennial celebrations in 1976. He was re-elected governor in 1983.
On July 21, 1988, at the 1988 Democrat National Convention in Atlanta, Georgia, Dukakis won the nomination for president with 2,877 out of 4,105 delegates. He chose for vice-president, Senator Lloyd Bentsen of Texas.
Dukakis and Bentsen lost the election to the George H.W. Bush and Dan Quale. After the election, he completed his governorship in 1991 and became a board member of Amtrak and a professor of political science at Northeastern, a visiting professor at Loyola Marymount and UCLA.
He is married to Katharine “Kitty,” and has three children, John, Andrea, and Kara.