AE Alumnus Admiral James Winnefeld to Join Georgia Tech Faculty

Admiral James “Sandy” Winnefeld, AE '78, has accepted an offer to serve as a distinguished faculty in the Sam Nunn School of International Affairs at Georgia Tech. He will be based out of the Georgia Tech Research Institute in Rosslyn, Virginia but will also maintain offices at the Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts here in Atlanta.

Announcement of the appointment came just days after the much-decorated Winnefeld officially retired from his most recent military assignment as the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Winnefeld will also serve as a senior fellow in the School’s Center for International Strategy, Technology and Policy, which focuses on policy research.

“We have already benefited greatly from Admiral Winnefeld’s expertise and experience in his role on the Georgia Tech Advisory Board, and are looking forward to his expanded role with the Institute,” said Georgia Tech President G.P. “Bud” Peterson.

“The richness of his leadership experience and his global perspective will be invaluable to our students, faculty and staff, along with the Atlanta community. We enthusiastically welcome him home to his alma mater.”

Winnefeld graduated from Georgia Tech in 1978 with a degree in aerospace engineering. He retired from his position as the nation’s second highest-ranking military officer on July 31.

“I am very pleased to join the Sam Nunn School of International Affairs and CISTP,” said Winnefeld.

“I've long been an admirer of Senator Nunn's, and look forward to working with ­– and continuing to learn from – him. I’m also excited to lend my energy and experience to a very talented group of faculty and students. It’s especially gratifying to be able to do so at an institution that gave so much to me as an undergraduate."

Prior to his role at the Joint Chiefs of Staff, he served as the commander of United States Northern Command and the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD). He also commanded the United States Sixth Fleet and NATO Allied Joint Command, Lisbon. His new title, distinguished professor, is the same as Nunn's, the former U.S. Senator for whom the Institute’s School of International Affairs is named.

“Admiral Winnefeld is one of our nation's most distinguished and valuable military leaders, and is now returning to his home base at Georgia Tech,” said Nunn.

“This is great news for the Nunn School and the Institute. Sandy will continue to render invaluable service to our nation by working with our students and faculty as they tackle some of our most important international and technological challenges."

Winnefeld’s awards include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Distinguished Service Medal, Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Air Medal, and five Battle Efficiency awards.

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  • Admiral James "Sandy" Winnefeld