Mom dishes on Zoellick

Published May 31, 2007

On Gladys Zoellick's 84th birthday Wednesday, President Bush named the Spring Hill resident's youngest son, Robert Zoellick, below, president of the World Bank. She took a break between birthday engagements to tell the St. Petersburg Times 10 things you probably haven't read about her son:

1. The pale blue tie he wore on TV might be a gift from her.

"I think I gave him that. He had that on, with a gray suit. He has beautiful blue eyes, like my mother."

2. He was the president of his high school student government for two years in Naperville, Ill.

"He was real active, very active. Ran his own campaign and everything."

3. She doesn't think he'll run for office.

"He likes to be the man behind the man. That's what he's always been."

4. He has long legs.

"He had 36-inch inseams."

5. He has an older brother, William Zoellick Jr.

"They're really close brothers, even though they're four years apart. They're both very smart men."

6. His mom is like a lot of moms.

"When I saw him on TV, I thought, 'Boy, I can tell you've been in a foreign country. You need a haircut.' "

7. He loves to read.

"I know he likes books about the Civil War. And the Revolutionary War and all the wars. But I know he's a Civil War addict. He always has been."

8. He's introduced his mother to several dignitaries.

"Let me see now. Father Bush. And I didn't meet George W. But I've always liked - I know other people don't like him but I do - Karl Rove."

9. He's an avid runner.

With those 36-inch inseams, "that's a lot of leg to be slapping down on concrete."

10. He told her Tuesday that he considered wishing her happy birthday when Bush introduced him Wednesday.

"He said, 'Tomorrow's a big day. I'd like to say happy birthday to you, but I think that'd be a bad idea.' "