Fred Malek

Fred Malek

Frederic "Fred" V. Malek (born December 22, 1936) is an American businessman and former assistant to United States presidents George H.W. Bush and Richard Nixon. He is currently a national finance committee co-chair of John McCain's presidential campaign.

Early life

Fred Malek was born in Berwyn, Ill. and raised in Chicago. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science from West Point in 1959, and served in Vietnam with Army Special Forces as an airborne ranger. He received his M.B.A. degree from Harvard Business School in 1964 and worked as a management consultant for McKinsey & Co.. In 1967, he left to co-found and assume chairmanship of Triangle Corp., a hand tool manufacturing company. [ [ Nomination of Frederic V. Malek To Be a Governor of the United States Postal Service] , John T. Woolley and Gerhard Peters, The American Presidency Project [online] . Santa Barbara, CA: University of California (hosted), Gerhard Peters (database).]

Political career

Nixon administration

Malek served in the Nixon administration in several different roles, including Deputy Under Secretary of Department of Health, Education, and Welfare under Secretary Robert Finch, as special assistant from 1970-73 and deputy director of Nixon's re-election campaign. [cite web |url= |title=Fred Malek |accessdate=2008-04-08]

As an efficiency expert to Nixon, Malek helped restructure Nixon's staff and officials and streamline the bureaucracy. [New York Times, November 15, 1972.] In his memoirs, Nixon described Malek as a "tough young businessman whose specialty was organization and management." ["RN: The Memoirs of Richard Nixon", p. 624, Richard Nixon, 1990.]

Malek was sworn in as Deputy Director of the Office of Management and Budget on February 2, 1973 and served until 1975 when he resigned to re-enter the private sector.

BLS controversy

In 1971, Richard Nixon became convinced the Bureau of Labor Statistics had come under the control of Democratic rivals and even a "Jewish cabal." He instructed aides Charles Colson and H. R. Haldeman to identify a list of Democrats and "important Jewish officials" at the agency. [ [ "Nixon's Jew count: The whole story!"] , Timothy Noah, "Slate", Sept. 26, 2007] .]

Fred Malek provided the data on Democrats after a check of voter registration rolls, but balked at fulfilling the rest of Nixon's query. "I refused four times. The fifth time he came back and gave me a direct order through Haldeman, so I gave him a number. I regret my compliance. It was a mistake.""Adviser Makes Peace With Jewish Groups; In Line for New Bush Job" Christopher Connell, AP, September 11, 1989.] Two months after he sent the list, two of the officials on it were reassigned to "less visible jobs" within the Labor Dept. ["New Job for Aide Who Quit Bush Campaign", Bernard Weinraub, Sept. 10, 1989.]

Seymour D. Reich, chairman of Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations during the 1990s, said "Malek made a mistake 18 years ago when he agreed to a regrettable request by President Nixon." But he added, Malek "has taken pains to assure the Jewish community that he realizes his error and that he intended no harm. I believe he is sincere." [Connell, AP, 1989.]

Bush administration

In September 1989, Malek was appointed by President Bush to coordinate plans for the 1990 economic summit of industrialized nations. The appointment was seen as a test of whether Malek could successfully serve in the administration. Malek had been a deputy chairman of the RNC in charge of the national convention in 1988 and was said to be "on track" for chief of staff in the Bush White House, but resigned to dissasociate the Vice President from negative publicity from the Nixon administration controversy. ["New Job for Aide Who Quit Bush Campaign", Bernard Weinraub, "New York Times", September 10, 1989.]

The appointment proved a success, and in 1992 Bush appointed Fred Malek campaign manager for his re-election. Malek was "responsible for nuts-and-bolts daily management." Malek ran the campaign with fundraiser Robert Mosbacher and pollster Robert Teeter out of a rented office in downtown Washington. ["Bush picks commerce secretary; GOP fundraiser to be nominated", Bill Mintz, "Houston Chronicle", December 27, 1991.]

Business career

In 1975, Fred Malek joined the board of Bethesda-based Marriott Corp., where he oversaw Marriott's hotel business, its design and construction division, and Sun Line Cruises. He was elected executive vice president of Marriott in March 1978, adding to his duties oversight of Marriott's contract food services group. ["Frederic Malek, Former Nixon Aide, Elected Vice President of Marriott", "Washington Post", Chapin Wright, March 13, 1978.] Under Malek's oversight of the hotel and resort division from 1981 to 1988, earnings increased nearly fourfold, or 18 percent a year, during a period that encompassed a recession, industry overbuilding and profit declines by competitors. ["Malek Brings Cargo of Controversy to NWA", "Minneapolis-St. Paul CityBusiness", Beth Ewen, October 9, 1989]

In early 1989, Malek joined the Carlyle Group as a senior adviser. On April 19, 1989, he led a group of investors to purchase the Coldwell Banker Commercial Group, the nation's largest commercial real estate services company, from Sears, Roebuck and Company at a price estimated at $300 million.

Malek soon joined Los Angeles investor Al Checchi and Marriott's Gary Wilson in a $3.65 billion, all-cash purchase of Northwest Airlines. The investor group, including representatives of the Bass brothers, and Bankers Trust New York Corp. was joined in the leveraged buyout by KLM Royal Dutch Airlines and Elders IXL, which contributed $480 million in equity. Malek and Checchi joined the airline's 10-member board. ["Checchi's backers will get about 20% of Northwest", Denise Gellene, "Los Angeles Times", June 24, 1989.] Checchi named Malek as president to replace president and CEO John Horn, and the two split the chairman duties held by Steven Rothmeier. ["Labor Upbeat About Change in Management at Northwest", AP, Sept. 29, 1989 .]

In July 1989, Malek and a group of Carlyle investors bought Marriott's leading airline catering for an estimated price of $650 million. ["Marriott will sell catering unit to one of NWA's buyers", Gellene, "Los Angeles Times", July 12, 1989.]

In 1991 Malek created Thayer Capital Partners, of which he is still Chairman. [cite web
last =
first =
title = Fred Malek: Chairman, Thayer Hidden Creek
url =
accessdate = 2008-04-08

SEC administrative action

On August 12, 2003, the SEC filed a civil fraud lawsuit [ SEC v. William A. DiBella and North Cove Ventures, LLC, Civil Action No. 304CV1342 (WWE) (District of Connecticut)] ] against former Connecticut state Senate Majority Leader William DiBella for participating in a fraudulent scheme to invest $75 million of the state pension funds with Malek's firm, Thayer Capital Partners.Colbert I. King, " [ Fred Malek, a Dog and the SEC] " "Washington Post" March 11, 2006] On May 18, 2007, DiBella and North Cove were found liable for aiding and abetting Silvester's intentional violations of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Thayer was found in negligence of Investment Advisers Act of 1940. Thayer paid a civil penalty of $150,000, and Malek personally paid a fine of $100,000. [ SEC v. William A. DiBella, et al, Civil Action No. 3:04 CV 1342 (EBB) (District of Connecticut)] ]


Malek is married to Marlene A. Malek. They have two children, and reside in McLean, Virginia.

Malek is a "fitness fanatic" who has kept up healthy habits since West Point. A skiing accident in the mid-1980s left Malek with an artificial hip, which forced him to switch from running to lifting weights, swimming and bicycling. ["Malek Brings Cargo of Controversy to NWA", "Minneapolis-St. Paul CityBusiness", Beth Ewen, October 9, 1989]

Published works

*"Hidden Tragedy: The Failure to Make Government Work", Fred Malek, Free Press, 1979. []

External links

* [ Fred Malek Blog]
* [ Fred Malek | Chairman, Thayer Hidden Creek] official biography
* [ Brokering Power in Business and Politics (Washington Post, April 21, 2008)]
* [ NNDB — Frederic V. Malek]
* [ Register of the Frederic V. Malek Papers, 1968-1977]
* [$/SEC/Registrant.asp?CIK=938919 SEC filings - Malek Frederic V]
* [ NameBase - Frederic V Malek]
* [ Nixon Presidential Library Archives - Frederic V Malek]


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