- NAME: Laurance Rockefeller
- OCCUPATION: Environmental Activist, Business Leader, Philanthropist
- BIRTH DATE: May 26, 1910
- DEATH DATE: c. July 11, 2004
- EDUCATION: Princeton University, Harvard Law School
- PLACE OF BIRTH: New York, New York
- PLACE OF DEATH: New York, New York
- Full Name: Laurance Spelman Rockefeller
- AKA: Laurance Rockefeller
- AKA: Laurance S. Rockefeller
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Venture capitalist and environmentalist Laurance Rockefeller founded the American Conservation Association and put conservationism on the American agenda.
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Under his direction, the ORRRC launched an environmental research study of unprecedented scope, culminating in a report full of suggestions which was then presented to Congress.
In addition to holding memberships with existing environmentalist groups such as the New York Zoological Society and the National Geographic Society, Rockefeller founded several of his own, including the American Conservation Association,
a private organization that allocates funds towards increasing knowledge and awareness of environmental preservation.
In 1960, Rockefeller became vice chairman of the New York State Council of Parks under Robert Moses. For the better part of the 1970s, Rockefeller served as president of the PIPC. Considered a foremost authority in environmental matters, he was a trusted advisor to several U.S. presidents, including Dwight D. Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford.
President George H.W. Bush called Rockefeller a "hidden national treasure" and awarded the lifelong conservationist a Congressional Gold Medal in 1991. In 2003, Rockefeller was named the first honorary citizen of the British Virgin Islands for his contributions to the region.
Laurance Rockefeller died of pulmonary fibrosis on July 11, 2004, in New York City. During his lifetime, his unwavering dedication to the environment made conservationism a part of America's agenda. His legacy promotes a comprehensive approach to environmentalism—one in which the individual assumes the same sense of responsibility he first felt as a child awed by the beauty of unspoiled land.
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While the term "American dynasty" might technically be an oxymoron, it's hard not to notice the similarities between the Rockefeller family and noble lineages that have spanned the globe for centuries. Like royal families have done in other nations, the Rockefellers have had a profound and irrevocable impact on the United States—from the oil and banking industries to property development, to politics and philanthropy—which will continue to resound for generations to come. Beginning with John D. Rockefeller Sr., who founded the Standard Oil Company and became one of the world's richest men, the Rockefeller troupe also includes John D. Rockefeller III, Winthrop Rockefeller, Nelson Rockefeller, Laurance Rockefeller and David Rockefeller.
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