Born in central France on July 5, 1911, Georges Jan Raymond Pompidou former Prime Minister of France held this position longer than any other Prime Minister in France. He was also President of France beginning in 1969 and ending at his death in April 2, 1974.
Pompidou was appointed as prime minister under Charles de Gaulle on April 16, 1962. He served until July 21, 1968. He was not a member of the National Assembly which made his appointment controversial. However in 1962 de Gaulle dissolved the National Assembly. In 1964 his duties were to calm down a miners' strike and Pompidou is responsible for the peaceful resolution of the student uprising gin May 1968.
In 1969 Pompidou was elected president of France. He defeated Alain Poher by a wide margin. He was a pragmatic leader and facilitated the entry the UK to the European Community. Pompidou initiated the Arianespace projects, the TGV projects and furthered the civilian nuclear program. His office was marked by efforts to modernize Paris. He constructed a modern art museum on the edge of the Marais area of Paris and initiated tearing down open air markets. He replaced them with a mall, built the Monparnasse Tower and constructed an expressway on the Seine.
Pompidou died from Waldenstrom"s macroglobulinemia or a cancer of the blood on April 2, 1974. He was survived by his wife Claude Pompidou. Claude lived for over 30 years after her husband's death and his son Alain Pompidou was CEO of the European Patent office.