Francis Powers, Jr.
Born in Burbank, CA in 1965, Francis Gary Powers Jr. is the son of Francis Gary and Claudia “Sue” Powers. Gary holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in philosophy from California State University, Los Angeles, and a master’s degree in public administration and certification in nonprofit management from George Mason University (GMU), Fairfax, Virginia. He will graduate this year with his master’s degree in U.S. history from Adams State University, Alamosa, CO.
Gary is the founder and chairman emeritus of The Cold War Museum, a 501(c) (3) charity located at Vint Hill, VA, 45 minutes west of Washington, D.C. He founded the museum in 1996 to honor Cold War veterans, preserve Cold War history and educate future generations about this time period. As chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee for the Cold War Theme Study, he works with the National Park Service and leading Cold War experts to identify historic Cold War sites for commemorating, interpreting and preservation. Recently, he consulted for a Steven Spielberg Cold War thriller, “Bridge of Spies,” about James Donovan who brokered the 1962 spy exchange between KGB spy Rudolph Abel and CIA U-2 pilot Francis Gary Powers, Sr.
Gary is the author of “Letters from a Soviet Prison” (2017) and “Spy Pilot” (2019) which both help to dispel the misinformation surrounding the U-2 incident. He is a board member of the Strategic Air Command and Aerospace Museum near Omaha, NE and an honorary board member of the International Spy Museum in Washington, D.C. Because of his efforts to honor Cold War veterans, the Junior Chamber of Commerce selected him as one of the “Ten Outstanding Young Americans” for 2002. Gary lectures internationally and appears regularly on C-SPAN and the History, Discovery and A&E channels. He is married and has one son.