Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Christine Todd Whitman
Ms. Whitman was born Christine Todd, in New York City. She was raised in New Jersey and attended the Chapin School in New York City. She graduated from Wheaton College in 1968. After graduating, she worked on Nelson Rockefeller's presidential campaign.
She was considered as a running mate for then-presidential candidate George W. Bush in July 2000. However her moderate views on many issues made this somewhat unlikely; indeed during her time as governor she was constantly criticized by conservatives such as New York area radio talk show host Bob Grant . Her prospects were also lowered by the release of a photo of a 1996 racial profiling incident three weeks before the 2000 Republican National Convention. During a public relations event in Camden, New Jersey in which the governor rode along in a police patrol car, officers stopped a 16-year-old black male named Sherron Rolax for suspicious activity and proceeded to frisk him. After finding nothing, Whitman also frisked the suspect while a state trooper photographed her. This photo drew fire from civil rights leaders who saw this as a violation of Rolax's civil rights and an endorsement of racial profiling by the governor. Whitman told the press that she regretted the incident and pointed to her 1999 efforts against the state police force's racial profiling practices. Rolax would later be imprisoned in 2003 after pleading guilty to drug possession.
Although she did not become Bush's running mate, she was later appointed by the president as the Administrator of the United States Environmental Protection Agency. As head of the EPA, she made headlines for disavowing (with the President) the validity of a government-commissioned report suggesting a human contribution to global warming. On May 20, 2003 she resigned her position, effective June 27 of that year. Some have questioned her role in the alleged coverup of the toxic chemicals in the air around Ground Zero after the September 11, 2001 terror attacks on New York City though the reason she gave was to spend time with her family.
In early 2005, she released a book entitled in which she criticizes the policies of the Bush administration and its electoral strategy, which she views as divisive. It has been suggested that this may be a prelude to a candidacy for president in 2008 as a moderate Republican.
She is married to John R. Whitman, a financial consultant, and they have two children.
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