General James Jones (USMC ret.) served as the national security adviser to President Barack Obama from January 2009 to October 2010.
Prior to that, General Jones was president and chief executive officer of the U.S. Chamber Institute for 21st Century Energy. From July 1999 to January 2003, General Jones was the 32nd commandant of the Marine Corps. After relinquishing command as commandant, he assumed the positions of supreme allied commander, Europe (SACEUR) and commander of the U.S. European Command (USEUCOM), positions he held until December 2006.
General Jones retired from active duty in the U.S. Marine Corps on February 1, 2007, after more than 40 years of uniformed service to the nation. On November 28, 2007, he was appointed as the Department of State’s special envoy for Middle East security. In this capacity, he worked with Israeli and Palestinian officials in furthering the peace process, which was focused on the full range of security issues in order to strengthen security for both sides.
General Jones spent his formative years in France, returning to the United States to attend Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service, from which he earned a B.S. degree in 1966. He also graduated from the National War College in Washington, D.C., in June 1985. He was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Marine Corps in January 1967 and later that year was ordered to the Republic of Vietnam where he served as a platoon and company commander.
Over the next four decades, General Jones served in a variety of command and staff positions while stationed in the United States, Europe, and Okinawa, Japan. In addition to combat experience in Vietnam, his deployment experiences included tours as commander of the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit in Operation Provide Comfort in Northern Iraq and Turkey and, after advancing to brigadier general, as chief of staff of the Joint Task Force Provide Promise for operations in Bosnia-Herzegovina and Macedonia.
In addition to having been awarded national and international military awards, General Jones received an honorary doctorate of letters in 2002 from Georgetown University.