Before becoming the Governor of Florida, Reubin O'Donovan Askew received a B.S. from Florida State University and an LL.B. from the University of Florida. He enlisted in the United States paratroopers in 1946 as a private and was discharged as a sergeant in 1948. He served in the Air Force from 1951-1953 as a second lieutenant.
Askew began his political career when he was elected Representative of the Florida Legislature in 1958. He served as representative until 1962, when he was elected Senator of Florida. He served in that capacity until 1970. In 1971, Askew was elected Governor of Florida, where he served until 1979.
Askew delivered the Keynote Address at the Democratic National Convention in 1972. He was elected Chairman of the Democratic Governors' Conference in 1978. Askew was appointed to the Cabinet position of United States Trade Representative by President Jimmy Carter. In 1983, Askew was a presidential candidate.
Askew was a member of Escambia Chapter in Pensacola, Florida. He was initiated in 1944. He received the Legion of Honor in 1971. Askew was a member of the first class to be inducted into the DeMolay Hall of Fame on November 13, 1986.
"DeMolay played an important role during the formative years of my life. It gave me one of my earliest opportunities to learn about leadership and brotherhood. The values taught in DeMolay continue to be highly relevant and necessary to character development in young people in the difficult world of today."