|Name||Otis "Doc" Bowen|
Bremen, Indiana , United States
|| February 26, 1918
|Died||May 04, 2013
Feb 22, 2022 04:17pm
Army - Lutheran -
|Info||Governor of Indiana from January 9, 1973 to January 13, 1981 |
Otis Bowen was born near Richland Center in Fulton county, Indiana. He graduated from Indiana University and received his M.D. from Indiana University Medical School. After earning A.B. and M.D. degrees from Indiana University, he served in the U.S. Army Medical Corps, 1943-1946, and was with the first wave of allied troops in the invasion of Okinawa in 1945. After discharge, he established a family medical practice at Bremen, Marshall County, which was to last twenty-six years.
For fourteen years Bowen served as a Republican representative in the state legislature, the first ever to serve three consecutive sessions as speaker of the house. Having lost the Republican nomination for governor to Edgar Whitcomb in 1968, Bowen was elected governor in 1972. After passage of the state constitutional amendment in 1972 allowing governors to serve consecutive four-year terms, he became in 1976 the first modern governor to succeed himself. His administration has been marked by a tax restructuring program, reducing property taxes and increasing the sales tax.
After leaving office, Dr. Bowen became professor of medicine and director of undergraduate family practice education at the Indiana University Medical Center. Late in 1985, President Ronald W. Reagan nominated him as Secretary of the Department of Health & Human Services. Quickly confirmed by the U.S. Senate, he served in the cabinet until President Reagan left office on January 20, 1989.
Throughout his political career "Doc" Bowen has kept a prescription pad handy, recommending remedies to cure the common cold and sore throat for both colleagues and members of the press. He has also attempted to maintain the quiet, steady patience required of a physician. Bowen currently lives in retirement in Bremen.
Source: Peat, Wilbur D. Portraits and Painters of the Governors of Indiana 1800-1978. Revised, edited and with new entries by Diane Gail Lazarus, Indianapolis Museum of Art. Biographies of the governors by Lana Ruegamer, Indiana Historical Society. Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Society and Indianapolis Museum of Art, 1978. Following update to Governor Bowen's biography was prepared in October 1998 by William Du Bois Jr.