William Rehnquist was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in 1924. He served in the Army Air Corps during WWII, following which he earned his B.A. (Phi Beta Kappa) and M.A. in political science at Stanford University in 1948. He received a second M.A. in government from Harvard two years later. He then entered Stanford Law School where he graduated first in his class in 1952. Rehnquist was described by one of his instructors as "the outstanding student of his law school generation." He married Natalie Cornell in 1953, and went to work for a law firm in Phoenix, Arizona. The couple had a son and two daughters. In 1964 Rehnquist became assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department's Office of Legal Council. He was confirmed by the Senate as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court in December, 1971, and took his place on the bench in January, 1972. He became the sixteenth Chief Justice of the Supreme Court in 1987.