Herbert Claiborne Pell IV is an American lawyer and military officer who has been a commander in the United States Armed Forces. He is also a politician, having served as Assistant Secretary of Defense for Intelligence from 2001 to 2003 and as Deputy Secretary of Defense from 2003 to 2005. Pell was born on October 15, 1951, in Fayetteville, Arkansas. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Yale University in 1974 and a law degree from Harvard University in 1979.

Pell served as an infantry lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army from 1981 to 1985. From 1987 to 1991, he was an assistant attorney general at the Justice Department. From 1991 to 1993, Pell served as the Deputy Associate Attorney General at the Department of Justice under then-Attorney General Edwin Meese III. 

Clay Pell, a Senator from Rhode Island and then-director of the Providence Children’s Hospital, announced on Tuesday that he would run for Governor of Rhode Island in the 2014 election. Pell has been a powerful advocate for higher education reform in Rhode Island and is known for his work fighting to improve care for children with HIV/AIDS. He also has a long career in the business world, having worked as an entrepreneur and investment banker.

Clay Pell, a Rhode Island Senator and University of Rhode Island alumna, announced on Monday that she is running for the open state gubernatorial seat in 2014. Pell has been highly visible in the Democratic Party since she first ran for office as a candidate for the Rhode Island House of Representatives in 2002. As a lawmaker, Pell fought for increased access to healthcare and education opportunities for low-income residents and was an outspoken opponent of the war in Afghanistan. She also served as Vice President of the Providence College Democrats Club from 2006 to 2010.

Pell’s candidacy comes as a surprise given her lack of major political experience and recent history with the Rhode Island Democratic Party.

Personal Life

Clay Pell married two-time Olympic medalist and five-time world champion Michelle Kwan in 2003. Clay Pell, a scholar and politician from Rhode Island, announced in a statement on Monday that he filed for divorce from his wife in 2017. Pell is the son of former Rhode Island Governor James Pell, who is currently serving as an adviser to President Trump. The couple married in April 2011 and have two children.

Clay Pell announced on February 2, 2021, Wednesday he had married his former high school classmate Youna Kim. Pell, a wealthy politician who is currently running for office in Rhode Island, and Youna were first introduced to each other in 2006 when they were both students at Brown University. Pell and Youna have two children together. The couple is expected to announce their wedding date later this year.


Clay Pell, son of the late Sen. Edward M. Pell (D-IL), joined the United States Coast Guard and graduated first in his class from the Coast Guard Dire. Pell has been a member of the Coast Guard for over 20 years, starting as a cadet at the Coast Guard Academy in 1993. In 2002, he was selected to serve as a lieutenant commander in the Coast Guard Reserve. He is currently captain of Commanding Officer Squadron 5 (CG-5) stationed at Naval Station Mayport, Fla., and is commandant of the Coast Guard Academy’s enlisted midshipmen program.

Clay Pell, the judge advocate general of the United States from 2009 to 2011, has a net worth of $12 million. Pell is also an accomplished lawyer, having been awarded a law degree from Boston University and a judicial arts degree from Temple University. Pell has also worked as an associate editor at The Federalist and has written for The Atlantic, The New York Times, and Politico.

Clay Pell was elected as a presidential elector from Rhode Island on November 3, 2016. He previously served as the Majority Leader in the Rhode Island Senate and was also one of the candidates for Governor of Rhode Island in 2014. Pell is also a graduate of Brown University and has represented Rhode Island in the United States Congress since 2007.

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