This collection has been reviewed by the Reagan Library staff and it is available for research.  You may access this collection in our research room.  There is no need to file a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for any of the contents of this collection.


DAWSON, THOMAS C. II: Files, 1985-1987


Office of the Chief of Staff: Deputy Assistant to the President and Executive Assistant to the Chief of Staff


Thomas Dawson was born in Washington, DC in 1948, the son of a Department of State Foreign Service officer. He grew up mostly in the Washington area. He attended Washington and Lee University in Virginia for a year (1966-67), earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Stanford University in 1970, and spent a year doing graduate work at Princeton University. He left Princeton to work in the Department of State in economic affairs positions that included postings in Rio de Janeiro and London. In 1976 Dawson enrolled in graduate school at Stanford University, from which he earned an M.B.A. degree two years later. He was then hired by the Washington-based management consulting firm McKinsey & Company. Dawson was active in the 1980 Reagan-Bush campaign, working with the planning task force on examination of government organization. After Reagan won the election, Dawson became executive assistant to Transition Personnel Director E. Pendleton James. He continued to work under Mr. James in the White House Office of Presidential Personnel after Reagan assumed the Presidency in January 1981; however, in February, Dawson left Presidential Personnel for the Treasury Department, where he served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Developing Nations (1981-84) and Assistant Secretary for Business and Consumer Affairs (1984-85). When Treasury Secretary Donald Regan became White House Chief of Staff in February 1985, he brought Dawson back to the White House as his assistant. Dawson left the White House Office again in March 1987, shortly after Regan resigned as Chief of Staff, and became Executive Vice President at Regdon Associates. Dawson briefly returned to the Treasury Department in early 1989. He subsequently held positions with the International Monetary Fund and the investment firm Merrill Lynch.


This collection is arranged in three series. Given the nature of Dawson’s job, a large percentage of the material in the first two series pertains to Donald Regan and his work. At this time, the Reagan Library has not located any Dawson files from his time in Presidential Personnel.


SERIES I: DISKETTE FILE, 1985-1986 (0.2 l.ft, Box 1)

This series consists of printouts from an 8-inch IBM Displaywriter diskette. IBM Displaywriters were word processors used widely in the Reagan White House. The White House Office of Records Management printed the entire contents of this diskette and made a document listing for the diskette.


Most of the folders in this series consist of chronologically arranged agendas for Daily Operations Meetings, the regular meetings of the White House senior staff under Donald Regan. Each of these folders list the date spans for the agendas contained.  The Daily Operations Meeting agendas span 09/03/1985-11/06/1986.  The following dates for Daily Operations Meeting agendas are missing:



09/11/1985 10/01/1985 10/14/1985 10/15/1985 10/24/1985 10/25/1985

11/11/1985 11/18/1985 11/19/1985 11/20/1985 11/21/1985 11/28/1985

11/29/1985 12/24/1985 12/25/1985 12/26/1985 12/30/1985 12/31/1985

01/01/1986 01/02/1986 01/03/1986 01/08/1986 01/20/1986 02/06/1986

02/12/1986 02/13/1986 02/14/1986 02/17/1986 02/20/1986 02/26/1986

03/28/1986 03/31/1986 04/01/1986 04/02/1986 04/03/1986 04/04/1986

04/25/1986 04/28/1986 04/29/1986 04/30/1986 05/01/1986 05/02/1986

05/05/1986 05/06/1986 05/07/1986 05/09/1986 05/26/1986 06/09/1986

06/23/1986 06/27/1986 07/24/1986 08/07/1986 08/18/1986 08/19/1986

08/20/1986 08/21/1986 08/22/1986 08/25/1986 08/26/1986 08/27/1986

08/28/1986 08/29/1986 09/01/1986 09/02/1986 09/03/1986 09/04/1986

09/05/1986 09/08/1986 10/10/1986 10/13/1986 10/24/1986 10/30/1986

10/31/1986 11/03/1986


The remaining diskette folders contain correspondence and memos. These folders have a document by document list for each folder.  The descriptions are indented underneath the folder title on the contents list.


SERIES II: PRESIDENTIAL EVENT FILE, 1986-1987 (0.4 l.ft., Boxes 1-2)

This series consists of chronologically arranged folders for events involving the President between September 1986 and February 1987. The folders contain scheduling information, advance planning for events, and event scenarios. The folders were originally sent to White House records management in a bloc along with several Donald Regan files. The Reagan Library staff transferred this material to Dawson’s collection.



(0.1 l.ft, Box 2)

This series consists of a material pertaining to the White House Fellowship program, including a meeting of the President’s Commission on White House Fellowships. Dawson was appointed a member of the Commission on White House Fellowships in 1986.




          SERIES I: DISKETTE FILE, 1985-1986.

          Box 1

          [Daily Operations Meeting Agendas 09/03/1985-09/20/1985]

          [Daily Operations Meeting Agendas 09/23/1985-12/09/1985]

          [Daily Operations Meeting agendas 12/10/1985-03/14/1986]

[Daily Operations Meeting Agendas 03/17/1986-05/23/1986]

[Daily Operations Meeting Agendas 05/27/1986-07/25/1986]

[Daily Operations Meeting Agendas 07/28/1986-09/30/1986]

[Daily Operations Meeting Agendas 10/01/1986-11/06/1986]

          [Correspondence, Memos] (1) Contents:

Vosburgh Memo to Christian re Tour Request, 04/16/1985

Dawson Letter to Leslie M. Alexander, 04/23/1985

Regan Straightwire to Bill Ellis re Bobby Piper, 04/30/1985

Dawson Letter to Frank A. Whetstone re President's Trip to Germany,


Dawson Memo to Sprinkel re Redefinition of Poverty, 07/01/1985

Budget Deficit as a Percentage of GNP, [07/30/1985]

Employment-Population Ratio [08/05/1985]

Employment Population Ratio [08/09/1985]

Annual Average Employment-Population Ratio [08/09/1985]

Memo Unsigned – [Possible Talking Points for Regan], 09/03/1985

Dawson Memo to Regan re LSG Invitation List, 09/03/1985

Draft Press Notice re Hurricane Elena, 09/12/1985

Measurement of Dollar Movement, [09/23/1985]

Exchange Rate Quotations, 09/23/1985

Vosburgh Memo to Photo Office re Photo Request, 10/31/1985

September Congressional Phones Calls

October Congressional Phone Calls

Dawson Memo to Regan re Horner and Loretta Cornelius, 11/11/1985

Items - Tax Reform, Farm Bill, Gramm - Rudman, 12/16/1985

Statement on Gramm - Rudman [1985]

Dawson Memo to Regan re Reading Material, 01/08/1986

Remarks to Republican Women's Federal Forum [01/08/1986]

[Correspondence, Memos] (2) Contents:

                   Dawson Memo to Collamore re Mailing List for the Fund for America's

 Future, 05/30/1986

Items - AT&T, Barber Conable, Terry Eastland, NY Post, Bill Marriott and

          Smithsonian Restaurant, Williams Companies and AMT, 06/10/1986

Fiester Memo to Renwick re Keys to Rooms 460 and 520, 08/25/1986

Dawson Memo to Jim Miller, re Information on Army Salaries, 08/26/1986

DTR Memo to Al (Kingon) re Agriculture Policy, 08/26/1986

Dawson Memo to Ball and Jim Miller re Legislative Area, 08/26/1986

Dawson Memo to Sprinkel re Leading Indicator, 08/26/1986

Regan Letter to Jeffrey M. Feiner re Retail Index, 08/26/1986

Note for Donald T. Regan from David Chew re OP ED Piece, South Africa

          Strategy, Wirthlin Survey  [08/29/1986]

Thomas Memo to Regan re Iceland / Post Iceland, 10/07/1986

Talking Points for WH Political Briefing, 11/05/1986

Talking Points with Chancellor Kohl [1986]

Executive Summary, Creating a Center for Education Statistics [1986]

Document re “Twelfth Commandment” [n.d.]



          Box 1, cont.

09/24/1986 – GOP Fundraising, Detroit, Omaha (1)-(3)

09/25/1986 – National Fraternal Congress, Washington, DC

09/26/1986 – Natl. Security Agency, Ft. Meade, Maryland

09/29/1986 – Kansas City & Sioux Falls, SD

09/30/1986 ­– World Bank/IMF Washington, DC

09/30/1986 – Eagles Reception Washington, DC

10/01/1986 – Carter Library – Atlanta (1)-(3)


          Box 2

10/07/1986 – Republican Governors, Washington, DC

10/08/1986 – Raleigh, Atlanta (1)(2)

10/11/1986-10/12/1986 – Pre-Summit Reagan/Gorbachev Iceland – Administrative


10/15/1986 – Baltimore, Maryland

10/17/1986 – Senator Mark Andrews, F. R. [Fundraiser], Grand Forks, North Dakota

10/23/1986 & 10/24/1986 – [Wisconsin, Missouri, Oklahoma, Florida] Tampa,

          Shreveport, Oklahoma City and St. Louis (1)(2)

11/15/1986 – Margaret Thatcher Camp David Visit

11/18/1986 – Ethics and Public Policy Dinner

11/20/1986 – Senate Republican Dinner

12/07/1986 – Kennedy Center Honors Gala

12/08/1986 – Women Entrepreneurs

12/14/1986 – Taping of “Christmas in Washington”

01/27/1987 – State of the Union Address

02/05/1986 [1987] – Prayer Breakfast

02/20/1987 – C-PAC Luncheon [Conservative Political Action Conference]

[Note re Copying (n.d.)]



Box 2, cont.

Mid-Year Commission Meeting, Friday, 01/23/1987 (1)(2)

White House Fellowships (1)-(5)