HomeAbout UsBiographiesDisplay

DEBORAH LEE JAMES

PRINT | E-MAIL

Stepped down as Secretary of the Air Force January 20, 2017

Deborah Lee James is the 23rd Secretary of the Air Force and is responsible for the affairs of the Department of the Air Force, including the organizing, training, equipping and providing for the welfare of its nearly 660,000 active-duty, Guard, Reserve and civilian Airmen and their families. She also oversees the Air Force's annual budget of more than $139 billion.

Ms. James has 30 years of senior homeland and national security experience in the federal government and the private sector. Prior to her current position, Ms. James served as President of Science Applications International Corporation's Technical and Engineering Sector, where she was responsible for 8,700 employees and more than $2 billion in revenue.

For nearly a decade, Ms. James held a variety of positions with SAIC to include Senior Vice President and Director of Homeland Security. From 2000 to 2001, she was Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Business Executives for National Security, and from 1998 to 2000 she was Vice President of International Operations and Marketing at United Technologies.

During the Clinton Administration, from 1993 to 1998, Ms. James served in the Pentagon as the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs. In that position, she was the Secretary of Defense’s senior advisor on all matters pertaining to the 1.8 million National Guard and Reserve personnel worldwide. In addition to working extensively with Congress, state governors, the business community, military associations, and international officials on National Guard and Reserve component issues, she oversaw a $10 billion budget and supervised a 100-plus-person staff. Prior to her Senate confirmation in 1993, she served as an assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Legislative Affairs.

From 1983 to 1993, she worked as a professional staff member on the House Armed Services Committee, where she served as a senior advisor to the Military Personnel and Compensation Subcommittee, the NATO Burden Sharing Panel, and the Chairman’s Member Services team.

Ms. James earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in comparative area studies from Duke University and a master’s degree in international affairs from Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs.

EDUCATION
1979 Bachelor of Arts degree in comparative area studies, Duke University, Durham, N.C.
1981 Master’s degree in international affairs, Columbia University, N.Y.

CAREER CHRONOLOGY
1. 1983 - 1993, Professional Staff Member, Armed Services Committee, U.S. House of Representatives, Washington, D.C.
2. 1993 - 1998, Assistant Secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs, Office of the Secretary of Defense, Washington, D.C.
3. 1999 - 2000, Vice President of International Operations and Marketing, United Technologies, Washington, D.C.
4. 2000 - 2001, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Business Executives for National Security, Washington, D.C.
5. 2002 - 2013, Senior Vice President and Director for Homeland Security; Senior Vice President, C4IT Business Unit General Manager; Executive Vice President, Communications and Government Affairs; President, Technical and Engineering Sector, Science Applications International Corporation, McLean, Va.
6. 2013 - 2017, Secretary of the Air Force, Washington, D.C. 

(Current as of January 2017)

Engage

Twitter
RT @USAFReserve: Air Force Recruiting makes goal for FY20 #ReserveReady #ReserveRecruits #ReadyAF https://t.co/lDixycrWV0
Twitter
RT @cmsaf_official: Happy birthday to a living legend, Col Gail Halvorsen, aka the “Berlin Candy Bomber.” Col Halvorsen turns 100 today!…
Twitter
RT @grandslamwing: Just a little 50th EARS refueling to quench your #TankerThirst today. ✈️⛽️ @USAFCENT @CENTCOM @usairforce @1stCombatC
Twitter
F-22 Raptors and F-15 Eagles from @JBLEnews, Virginia, and @SJAFB, North Carolina, participated in a Weapons System… https://t.co/FRHZU3puSC
Twitter
RT @HQ_AFMC: Happy 💯birthday to Col. (Ret) Gail Halvorsen, aka "The Candy Bomber"🍬 known for dropping candy in addition to supplies during…
Twitter
RT @AirNatlGuard: Whether assisting food banks, processing unemployment claims or fighting wildfires, Senior Airman Payton Chiou has sought…
Twitter
When you log off on a Friday. https://t.co/sCxepe8kyq
Twitter
Air Force Hurricane Hunters track #HurricaneDelta over the Gulf of Mexico. The @53rdWRS at Keesler Air Force Base i… https://t.co/6ZJVLoFe6m
Twitter
See what to takes for the 2nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron to maintain the mission readiness. #ReadyAFhttps://t.co/p6SObyaz4P
Twitter
Rise and Shine! https://t.co/AIgHE1YjkC
Twitter
RT @AirmanMagazine: Good mentors pass knowledge on to the newcomers. Always look out for your Airmen. 🔗 https://t.co/7qZl1XTpcj https://t.…
Twitter
RT @97AMW: Each year, we observe National Hispanic Heritage Month from Sept. 15-Oct. 15. This month, we would like to highlight Tech. Sgt.…
Twitter
RT @Hanscom_AFB: Our Enterprise-IT-as-Service Team is helping to ensure mission readiness for the entire Department of the @usairforce. The…
Twitter
The @AF_Academy band recognized graduates, cadets & officers who’ve passed away in the last year during a ceremony… https://t.co/y5f5G6XAeS
Twitter
#DYK @HQ_AFMC manages installation and mission support, discovery and development, test and evaluation, and life cy… https://t.co/aBJVgXG6i1
Twitter
RT @USAFReserve: Accelerate Change (Story by the @920thRescueWing) #ReserveReady #ReserveResilient #ReserveReform #ReadyAF https://t.co/j…
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,291,176
Follow Us