Nixon’s nemesis, Ruckelshaus, dies

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National News

November 29, 2019 - 9:38 AM

William D. Ruckelshaus in 1975. (Greg Gilbert / The Seattle Times/TNS)

NEW YORK — William Ruckelshaus, the first head of the Environmental Protection Agency who later became a heroic figure for resisting President Richard Nixon’s attempts to cover up the Watergate scandal, has died. He was 87.

He died Wednesday at his home in Seattle, according to his daughter Mary Ruckelshaus.

Named by Time magazine as one of the 10 best Cabinet officers of the 20th century, Ruckelshaus took charge of the newly created EPA in 1970 and made headlines for pushing through health-based standards for air pollutants and car emissions, and for banning the pesticide DDT.

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