Admiral James Stavridis USN (Ret.)

A Florida native, Admiral James Stavridis USN (Ret.), attended the US Naval Academy at Annapolis and spent more than three decades in the Navy, rising to the rank of 4-star Admiral. Among his many commands were four years as the 16th Supreme Allied Commander at NATO, where he oversaw operations in Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, the Balkans, and Africa, where he dealt with piracy off the African coast.

He also commanded the US Southern Command in Miami, charged with military operations throughout Latin America. He was the longest-serving Combatant Commander in recent US history.

He has served as senior military assistant to the Secretary of the Navy and the Secretary of Defense. He led the Navy’s premier operational think tank for innovation, Deep Blue, immediately after the 9/11 attacks.

He won the Battenberg Cup for commanding the top ship in the Atlantic Fleet and the Navy League John Paul Jones Award for Inspirational Leadership, along with more than 50 US and international medals and decorations, including 28 from foreign nations.

Admiral Stavridis has published six books on leadership, Latin America, ship handling, and innovation, as well as more than 100 articles in leading journals. His 2012 TED talk on 21st century security has over 700,000 views online. His memoir of his NATO years, The Accidental Admiral, was released in October 2014.

Admiral Stavridis is the Chair of the Board of the US Naval Institute, the professional association of the Nation’s sea services: Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, and Merchant Marine. He is a monthly columnist for TIME Magazine and Chief International Security Analyst for NBC News.

He earned a PhD from the Fletcher School at Tufts and is the School’s 12th dean. Admiral Stavridis is happily married to Laura, and they have two daughters – one working at Google and the other a Lieutenant in the US Navy.