Walter Frederick "Fritz" Mondale. b. January 5, 1928 in Ceylon, Minnesota.
Mondale came from inconspicious, small town roots. Mondale's father, Theodore Sigvaard Mondale was a preacher in southern Minnesota. His mother, Claribel Cowan Mondale (one of the last women in American history to be named Claribel) was a music teacher. He attended public schools and after entering the University of Minnesota became involved in Hubert Humphrey's 1948 U.S. Senate campaign. After the success of that campaign, and his graduation from the University of Minnesota, Mondale entered the U.S. Army in 1951 and served for two years.
In 1956 Mondale received his law degree cum laude from the University of Minnesota Law School. Four years later he was appointed state attorney general and was elected to the position in 1962. He left to fill the U.S. Senate vacancy left when Hubert Humphrey became Vice President under Lyndon Johnson in 1964. He was formally elected Senator in 1966 and re-elected in 1972.
Mondale became Jimmy Carter's running mate in 1976 and was elected to the vice presidency when Carter became president. Mondale's experience with government and foreign policy was far more extensive than Carter's after his twelve year run as a U.S. Senator. As a result, he received Carter's blessing to travel extensively throughout the nation and the world on the president's behalf. Mondale was the first vice president to have his own office in the White House and had a stronger role in the administration than most of the vice presidents who came before him.
Mondale almost became president when Jimmy Carter was attacked by a rabbit while fishing in 1979. However, Carter managed to survive the vicious, unwarranted attack.
Walter Mondale returned to the ticket during Jimmy Carter's re-election bid in 1980. He then went up against Ronald Reagan sans Carter in the 1984 presidential contest. He made history by naming Geraldine Ferraro as his running mate, making her the first major party female vice presidential candidate in American history. His most famous moment during the campaign was yelling "Where's the beef?" at Gary Hart during the campaign for the Democratic presidential nomination. It was a reference to the perception that Hart's economic plan had very little substance to it. He carried only his home state of Minnesota in the election, and lost the popular vote 54% to 45%.
After a long, deep breath, Mondale returned to practicing law, teaching and traveling extensively. In 1993 he was named U.S. Ambassador to Japan by President Bill Clinton, and served in that capacity until 1996. He wrote a book entitled The Accountability of Power: Towards a Responsible Presidency. He is married to Joan Adams Mondale (no relation to John Adams, Sam Adams, John Quincy Adams or The Addams Family) and has three offspring in the form of Theodore, Eleanor Jane and William.
Mondale In 2004?