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Jimmy Carter- Biography – behind my name..

Posted by jimstech on November 14, 2010

Jimmy Carter — The man behind my name 😉

39th President of the United States of America


Jimmy Carter was born on October 1, 1924.  He was the 39th President of the United States of America, from 1977 until 1981.  He also received the 2002 Nobel Peace Prize, which made him the sole President of the United States to receive the Nobel Peace Prize following his presidency.  Before he became president, Jimmy Carter also served two terms in the Georgia Senate and was a governor in Georgia from 1971 until 1975.  He was additionally a naval officer and a peanut farmer.

As President of the United States, Jimmy Carter created two new cabinet departments, the Department of Education and the Department of Energy.  His national energy policy included price control of energy, conservation, and development of new technology.  Carter pursed the Camp David Accords, the second round of the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks, and the Panama Canal Treaties as parts of his foreign affairs.  He pushed for human rights and also was able to negotiate a peace treaty between Egypt and Israel in 1979.  He returned the Panama Canal Zone to Panama, which was seen by many as a concession of U.S. influence in Latin American countries, and for this action, Carter received much criticism.  Additionally, with his term came persistent stagflation, including in the United States, and this damaged his popularity as well.  The last year of his presidency included a few major crises, which included the takeover of the American embassy in Iran in 1979, which involved the holding of a number of hostages by Iranian students.  There was also the unsuccessful rescue attempt of those same hostages.  There were serious shortages in fuel, and there was also the invasion of Afghanistan by the Soviets.  By the time 1980 came around and time for a new election, Jimmy Carter’s disapproval ratings were high and he was challenged by Ted Kennedy for the Democratic Party Nomination.  Although he managed to beat Kennedy for the nomination, he lost in the general election to Ronald Reagan, the Republican candidate.

After Jimmy Carter left office, he and his wife began the Carter Center in 1982.  This is a not-for-profit organization that works to support and advance human rights.  He has also spent much time traveling in order to conduct peace negotiations, advance the prevention of disease, and observe elections.  He is involved in the Habitat for Humanity project and is still very outspoken about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Early Life

Jimmy Carter was born in Plains, Georgia, which is a tiny southwest Georgia town near Americus.  His family came from northern England originally.  The family had lived in Georgia for a few generations.  He was the first president that was actually born in a hospital.  He was the oldest child of Bessie Lillian Gordy and James Earl Carter.  His father was a business owner, and his mother was a registered nurse.  He loved to read and was a gifted student.  When he attended Plains High School, he was a basketball star.  He was influenced by Julia Coleman, one of his high school teachers.  While in high school, he was a member of the Future Farmers of America.  Following high school, Jimmy enrolled in the Georgia Southwestern College, located in Americus.  He later applied to the United States Naval Academy.  He took more math courses at Georgia Tech, and was admitted to the Naval Academy in 1943.  He graduated 59th of 820 midshipmen.  Jimmy Carter had three siblings:  William Alton “Billy” Carter, Gloria Carter Spann, and Ruth Carter Stapleton.  He was married to Rosalynn Smith in 1946.  Together they had four children, who were John William “Jack” Carter, James Earl “Chip” Carter III, Donnel Jeffrey “Jeff” Carter, and Amy Lynn Carter.

Career in the Navy

Jimmy Carter served on diesel-electric submarines and surface ships while he was in Pacific and Atlantic fleets.  He was a junior officer, and he was able to complete the necessary qualifications in order to command a diesel-electric submarine.  He applied for the nuclear submarine program of the US Navy that was run by Hyman G. Rickover, a Captain.  Carter said that along with his parents, Rickover had also had a great influence on him.  He loved being in the Navy and wanted it to be his career.  His biggest goal was to become the Chief of Naval Operations.  He felt that the best way he could be promoted was with submarine duty because he felt that nuclear power would be utilized in submarines.  After being in the military for six years, he trained for a position of engineering officer in USS Seawolf, a submarine.  However, his father died in July 1953, and he resigned from his commission with the Navy and was discharged on October 9, 1953.  He was then never able to serve on the nuclear submarine.


After serving in the Navy, Jimmy Carter took over the family business in Plains, Georgia.  He was involved in an accident with peanut farming that left him with a finger that is permanently bent.  Despite this, his farming business was very successful, and he was considered to be a wealthy peanut farmer.  Even from a young age, Jimmy Carter was deeply committed to Christianity.  Throughout his life, he was a Sunday School teacher.  When he was President, he would pray a few times a day.  He said that Jesus Christ was a driving force in his life.

Political Career

Jimmy Carter started his political career by serving on a number of local boards.  He would govern libraries, hospitals, and schools.  During the 1960s, he served two terms for Georgia in the state Senate.  In 1966, he considered running for the position of Representative for the United States House.  His Republican opponent ended up dropping out to run for Governor of Georgia.  Since Carter did not wish to see a Republican Governor in his state, he dropped out of the race for Congress too and joined in the race in order to be elected Governor.  Although he lost the Democratic primary, he did get enough votes as a third place candidate in order to force Ellis Arnall, the favorite, into a runoff election.  This resulted in the election of Lester Maddox.  Carter ran as a moderate alternative to the other candidates.  For the following four years, he went back to his agriculture business and began planning for his next campaign for Governor.  In preparation, he made more than 1,800 speeches in the state.  In his 1970 campaign, he ran against former Governor Carl Sanders.  Carter was not a segregationist, and he would not join the White Citizens’ Council, so there was a boycott of his peanut warehouse.  He also had been only one of two families in his church who voted for black people to be welcomed into the church.

On January 12, 1971, he was sworn in as the 76th Governor of Georgia.  In his inaugural speech, he said that the time of racial segregation had concluded, and it was unwelcome in the state of Georgia’s future.  This made Jimmy Carter the first statewide holder of office in the Deep South to say something of this nature in public.  Following his inauguration, he appointed a number of African Americans to his offices and boards for the state.  Although Carter claimed to be personally against abortion, he supported legalized abortion.  However, he did not increase federal funding for abortion services as president.  He also made the government in Georgia more efficient as he merged around 300 state agencies into only 30 agencies.  He pushed reforms through, also including equal state aid to schools in poor and wealthy areas of Georgia, setting up centers in the community for mentally handicapped children, and increasing educational programs for convicts in prison.  He also set up a new system for the appointment of judges and state government officials, and in his program, appointments made were based on merit instead of political influence or popularity.

In 1972, the US Supreme Court overturned the death penalty in 1972 in Georgia, and Carter proposed state legislation in order to replace the death penalty with life in prison instead.  He did sign new legislation, however, in 1973, that authorized the death penalty for cases of murder, rape, and other offenses.


In 1976 when Jimmy Carter announced that he intended to run for Presidency, his mother asked him, “President of what?”  In his campaign, his platform was the reorganization of government.  Despite his low name recognition, he became the front runner early on as he won the Iowa caucuses and the New Hampshire primary.  In 1976, he was interviewed by Playboy, and he remains the only President to be interviewed by the magazine.  As his running mate for president, he chose Walter F. Mondale, a Senator.  He won the general election against Gerald Ford in 1976.  During his time as president, the country was going through a time of energy crisis and inflation and recession.  He bailed out the Chrysler Corporation.  During a time of government deficits and high inflation, he canceled military pay raises.  He also gave amnesty for draft dodgers of the Vietnam War.  He signed the Camp David Accords and gave back the Panama Canal to Panama.  He also signed the SALTII nuclear arms reduction treaty with the Soviet Union.  During his final year as president, Jimmy Carter’s administration attempted to deal with the Iran hostage crisis, which contributed to him losing the 1980 presidential campaign to Ronald Reagan.

Later Years

Jimmy Carter went back to Georgia in 1981 and learned that his peanut farm had been mismanaged and he was now over a million dollars in debt on his farm.  He began living an active life, traveling, establishing The Carter Center, and writing a number of books.

After he left the office, he was viewed as a poor President by many.  He has received mixed reviews by many historians.  At the beginning of his presidency, he had a 66% approval rating, but by the time he left offic, his approval rating was only 34%.  Carter seemed to be a president that paid much attention to detail.  He seemed indecisive to many, retreated when under fire, and did not necessarily define his priorities in a clear manner.  He did not seem to be interested in working with other groups.  Carter’s reputation has improved quite a bit since he left the presidency.  While his approval rate was at 31% prior to the election in 1980, it was 64% when polled in the beginning of 2009.  He said that George H. W. Bush, successor to Reagan, sought him out and was very courteous and interested in his advice.  Carter, George H. W. Bush, and Bill Clinton have had working relationships after their presidencies, and even though they have political differences, they have become good friends and have worked together on a number of humanitarian projects.  Jimmy Carter is now only one of four presidents who did not have the opportunity to nominate a justice to the United States Supreme Court.

Jimmy Carter has continued to speak out against the death penalty.  He and his wife, Rosalynn, have been volunteers for Habitat for Humanity, which helps people of low income to buy and build their own homes.  He still teaches Sunday School and is a deacon for the Maranatha Baptist Church in Plains, Georgia.  Carter enjoys woodworking, tennis, skiing, cycling, fly-fishing, and painting.  Jimmy and his wife have three sons, one daughter, eight grandsons, three granddaughters, and even one great-grandson.  He is a sixth cousin to Elvis Presley and a cousin to Berry Gordy Jr. of Motown Records, on his mother’s side.

The Carter Center

Jimmy Carter started the Carter Center in Atlanta, Georgia with his wife.  His goal was to advance human rights and to alleviate human suffering that was unnecessary.  His non-profit and non-governmental center promotes democracy, works to prevent and mediate conflicts, and monitors the electoral process.  The foundation also works to improve global health through the eradication of diseases.  The foundation additionally works to diminish the stigma that is against mental illness and to improve overall nutrition in Africa through new crop production.  The Carter Center has been very busy and has had success.  They have eliminated more than 99% of the cases of Guinea worm disease, which is a parasite.  The Carter Center has also managed to monitor 70 different elections in 28 countries since 1989.  It has helped to resolve a variety of conflicts in Bosnia, Haiti, Ethiopia, Sudan, and North Korea.

Nobel Peace Prize

In 2002, Jimmy Carter was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his work helping to provide peaceful solutions to international conflicts, promote the social and economic development of other countries, and support human rights through his Carter center.  He is only one of two natives of Georgia to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.

September 28, 2010

The former President was on a plane on his way to a book signing in Cleveland, but fell ill on the flight. He was met when it landed by EMS and taken to the Metro Health Hospital in Cleveland.

Local News is reporting that President Carter will remain in hospital overnight, while reporters is reporting that he is out of hospital already.

Former President Carter is 85-years-old and will be 86 this Friday.

It is not known why Jimmy Carter had to be taken to hospital, but reported said, that aside from feeling sick, Carter is ‘otherwise fine’. Carter was suffering from an upset stomach on the plane.


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