Congressman Chris Van Hollen's 
Tribute to Mr. William R. Stewart
Washington, Apr 20, 2004

Mr. Speaker, I rise today to honor a constituent and distinguished public servant, Mr. William R.
Stewart. Mr. Stewart served as Chief Counsel of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB),
the first African American to do so. For his service, Mr. Stewart was a recipient of the
President's Award for Distinguished Federal Civilian Service, the only NLRB lawyer to receive
this honor its entire 69-year history. Upon bestowing this tribute, President Clinton spoke of Mr.
Stewart as ``instrumental in winning national labor law cases that have had a major impact on
American workers.'' The President further noted Mr. Stewart's contributions, such as ``protecting
the rights of the blind workers and preserving the ability of workers to vote by mail in union
Mr. Stewart was born in Terre Haute, Indiana. He graduated from Indiana University with a
bachelor's degree in government in 1954 and was elected Phi Beta Kappa. An ROTC student,
upon graduation, he was commissioned in the Army as a second lieutenant. He served in
Germany in an armored division and was later selected to be the courts and boards officer and
assistant adjunct of a combat command of more than 5,000 men. Upon completing his tour of
duty in 1957, he returned to his home State to complete law school at Indiana University. During
his time at Indiana Law, he was elected to the Order of the Coif, an honor society for law school
graduates from the 77 member schools.
Immediately following law school, Mr. Stewart worked as an attorney for the Atomic Energy
Commission, though he soon joined NLRB where he served with great distinction for most of his
professional career.
On February 16, 2004, William R. Stewart passed away at the age of 71, in Washington D.C. Mr.
Speaker, I would like to take this opportunity to extend my heartfelt sympathy to Mr. Stewart's
family, including his two brothers Stanley and Richard. My district, and the Nation, lost a great
public servant with the passing of William R. Stewart.
Mr. Speaker, I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Mr. William B. Gould IV. Mr.
Gould was Chairman of the NLRB during Mr. Stewart's final years there, as well as his dear
friend. He has provided me with a copy of the eulogy he delivered for his friend, and I
respectfully ask that it be included in the RECORD.