Brought up in modest circumstances, Mac was the only Arizonan to serve with high distinction in all three branches of government.
He was a humble public servant whose hard work, dedication and forward-looking policies had long-lasting effects on the state of Arizona and the nation.
His life of public service benefited millions of Americans and helped lay the groundwork for what the state of Arizona has become today.
This site is dedicated to the legacy of Mac and the American Dream.
United States Navy, 1917-1918
“Between 1936 and 1971, Ernest McFarland had the rare distinction across the United States of winning the triple crown of politics. He was elected to the U.S. Senate, where he became the Senate majority leader; Arizona’s Governor, and the state’s Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. He shined in all areas, leading the effort to pass the federal G.I. Bill, the state’s economic and environmental issues, and the court’s Miranda decision to protect the rights of the accused to an attorney. His career certainly ranks him at the top of the many illustrious Arizona politicians of the 20th century.” - James W. Johnson, Author of "Arizona Politicians: The Noble and the Notorious."
“Arizona isn’t Arizona without Ernest McFarland. The man known as ‘Mac’ is remembered as the Father of the G.I. Bill and an early proponent of what became the Central Arizona Project, but beyond the many decades of service to the state and the country is an Oklahoma farm boy who adopted Arizona early on and let the state adopt him.” - Ted Simons, Host and Managing Editor, PBS Arizona Horizon
“A former rural Arizona county judge, Mac was courteous, fair, impartial, and admired – something rarely seen in American politics today. In Washington he was liked and respected by his colleagues on both sides of the aisle. Mac was born on a small farm in Pottawatomie County, Oklahoma in 1894, attended country schools and worked long hours on the family farm. From those humble beginnings, Mac also overcame several personal tragedies, he rose Horatio Alger-like to become one of the most distinguished political figures in Twentieth Century America.” – Marshall Trimble, Arizona State Historian
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