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General Joseph L. Votel, US Army (Ret)

Former Commander, U.S. Central Command and U.S. Special Operations Command

General Joseph L. Votel is a retired U.S. Army Four-Star officer and the former Commander of the U.S. Central Command – responsible for U.S. and coalition military operations in the Middle East, Levant, and Central and South Asia.  During his 39 years in the military, he commanded special operations and conventional military forces at every level.  His career included combat in Panama, Afghanistan, and Iraq.  Notably, he led a 79-member coalition that successfully liberated Iraq and Syria from the Islamic State Caliphate.  He preceded his assignment at CENTCOM with service as the Commander of U.S. Special Operations Command and the Joint Special Operations Command. 

Following his retirement from military service, General Votel served as the President & CEO of Business Executives for National Security (BENS).  He is a member of the Board of Trustees of Noblis Corporation and a Strategic Advisor for Sierra Nevada Corporation and AGI, Inc.  Votel is a Board Director with AeroVironment; Minnesota Wire; DC Capital Partners; and Helix Decision Science and a member of the Government Advisory Board for Insight Partners.  He a non-resident Distinguished Fellow at the Middle East Institute and the Distinguished Chair of the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point.

General Votel is a member the Executive Boards at Freedom House and the UPenn Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law (CERL).  He is a member of the Advisory Board for Spirit of America.  Votel is a current member of the Defense Business Board and the Council on Foreign Relations. 

Votel was recognized with the Distinguished Military Leadership Award from the Atlantic Council; the U.S. – Arab Defense Leadership Award from the National Council on U.S. - Arab Relations; the Patriot Award from the Congressional Medal of Honor Society; the SGT James T. Regan Lifetime Achievement Award from the “Lead the Way” Foundation; and the Freedom Award from the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum.

Votel is a 1980 graduate of the United States Military Academy and earned Master’s degrees from the U.S. Army Command and Staff College and the Army War College.  He is married to Michele; and they have two grown sons, a daughter-in-law, and two grandchildren.  The Votels reside in Lake Elmo, Minnesota.

Parent Members

D.L.J.
Honorable Deborah Lee James (Chair)
Former Secretary, US Air Force
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Craig Albright
Craig Albright
Senior Finance Executive Xerox Corp (Former) and Executive Advisor
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A.A
Dr. Alex Alonso, PhD
Chief Knowledge Officer Society for Human Resource Management
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J.A.
Joseph Anderson
Chairman & Chief Executive Officer, Tag Holdings, LLC
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D.B.
David Beitel
Chief Technology Officer, Zillow Group
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S.D
Sally Donnelly
Founding Partner, Pallas Advisors
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C.E.
Cheryl Eliano
District 10 National Vice President, American Federation Of Government Employees
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C.G.
Dr. Christopher S. Gopal, PhD
Executive, Consultant, Author & Educator, Global Supply Chain & Operations
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L.H.
Linnie M. Haynesworth
Co-Chair, Defense Business Board; Former Vice President, Northrop Grumman; & Independent Board Director
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E.H.
Erin Hill, Esq.
Former Chief Administrative Officer BNY Mellon
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S.LN.
Suzanne Leopoldi-Nichols
Former Chief Global Business Solutions Officer, WPP
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J.M.
Jennifer McClure
Founder & CEO, Unbridled Talent, LLC
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O.M.
Oscar Munoz
Retired Chairman, President & CEO United Airlines
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L.S.
General Larry Spencer, US Air Force (Ret)
President, Armed Forces Benefit Association
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D.W.
Dr. David Van Slyke, PhD
Dean, The Maxwell School of Citizenship & Public Affairs Syracuse University
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D.W.
Honorable David M. Walker
Former Comptroller General of the United States
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J.W
General Johnnie Wilson, US Army (Ret)
Former Commanding General, US Army Materiel Command
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Robert Wolf
Robert Wolf
Founder, 32 Advisors
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S.Y
Safroadu "Saf" Yeboah-Amankwah
Senior VP & Chief Strategy Officer, Intel Corporation
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Subcommittee Members

A.B.
Anand Bahl, Chief Information Officer, Micron Technology, Inc.
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G.B
Greg Bowman, J.D., Chief Innovation Officer & Vice President of Corporate Development, Siemens Government Technologies, Inc.
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M.D.
Matthew Daniel, Principal of Talent Strategy, Guild Education
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M.K.
Marachel Knight, Senior Technology & Operations Executive AT&T (Former) and Board Director, Marvell Technology, Inc.
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Sarah Mineiro
Sarah Mineiro, Founder and CEO of Tanagra Enterprises
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E.R.
The Honorable Eric Rosenbach, Co-Director, Belfer Center for Science and Internal Affairs, Harvard Kennedy School
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B.S.
Brig Gen Bernard Skoch, US Air Force (Ret), Chair of the Board, Air and Space Forces Association
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S.S.
Stan Soloway, President & CEO, Celero Strategies, LLC
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P.,Z.
Patricia J. Zarodkiewicz, President, PatZ Consulting, LLC
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