“Howard E. Houston, Civil Servant”

Throughout decades of illustrious service to America, his favorite title was “Civil Servant”. Speaking to 40 Y’s Men of Meriden (seven by Zoom) during the first meeting of their 31st season on Sept. 13, Molly Houston Savard, Executive Director of the Bradley Home in Meriden, described the life and career of her father, Howard E. Houston.

Houston (1910-1998) was born in Ryan, Iowa, and was raised by his grandmother following his mother’s death when he was five years old. His education culminated at Columbia University in NYC as a highly educated social worker. He ultimately became both the builder and the first Executive Director of Meriden’s Bradley Home, a perpetual home for the aged and indigent in the city, in 1938.

Houston married in 1939 and served during WW II in the Pacific Theatre, attaining the Army rank of Captain in the Active Reserves. Post-war, this staunch Republican commenced a political career, both locally in Meriden and serving in the international arena. He served three terms as Mayor of Meriden (elected in 1947, 1949, and 1961), was president of the Meriden Rotary Club, and also served on numerous local and state Boards.

During the diplomatic portion of his career, Houston was energetic following the war, serving under various ambassadors with the US Agency for International Development (USAID), with contributions to India (rank of minister), Nepal (Acting Director of U.S. Operation mission), Peru, Korea (Director, Economic affairs, U.S. Embassy in Seoul), and the U.S. Agency for International Development in India. He was awarded the Mugunghwa Medal (order of Silver Merit) by the President of Korea and the Superior Honor Award of the Agency for International Development.

Houston spent his retirement years in Bloomfield, CT. Following her presentation, Savard fielded a series of questions about her father and the Bradley Home.

For further information about the Y’s Men of Meriden, go to ysmenofmeriden.com or call 203-238-7784.


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