James L. Buckley was born in New York City in 1923 and grew up in rural Connecticut. He received his undergraduate degree from Yale. Following service as a naval officer in World War II, he returned to New Haven to secure his law degree. After 20 years in private life, he was elected to the United States Senate (in 1970) as the candidate of New York's Conservative Party. He failed of reelection; but has since served as an undersecretary of state in the Reagan administration and, most recently, as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. He retired in 2000, and he and his wife now live in Sharon, Connecticut.