The CGSC Foundation has selected Dr. Shannon E. French, the new General Hugh Shelton Distinguished Visiting Chair of Ethics, as the Person of the Month for March 2017.
French is the Inamori Professor in Ethics, director of the Inamori International Center for Ethics and Excellence, and a tenured member of the philosophy department with a secondary appointment in the law school at Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) in Cleveland, Ohio. She is also a senior associate at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, D.C. Dr. French is the third person to occupy the chair since its inception in 2009. She officially assumed her new duty as the chair effective Feb. 1.
“We selected Dr. French last fall from a number of recommended candidates,” said Doug Tystad, CGSC Foundation CEO. “Dr. Ted Thomas, director of DCL, a group of his DCL instructors and the lead ethics instructor for CGSC were all involved in the screening and interview process. They recommended Dr. French but the decision was ultimately made by the Foundation. We informed her of our decision in November and received her letter of acceptance in the last week of January.”
The General Hugh Shelton Distinguished Visiting Chair of Ethics was established in November 2009 through a generous grant from Mr. Ross Perot through the Perot Foundation. Tystad said Perot intended this position to be occupied by someone without extensive military experience in order to provide the military with another point of view. French has not served in the military, but prior to assuming her duties at CWRU, she was an associate professor of philosophy at the United States Naval Academy, served as editor-in-chief of the International Journal of Ethical Leadership, and also served as an associate editor for the Journal of Military Ethics. She has also written extensively on the subject of ethics in the military, including a book entitled The Code of the Warrior: Exploring the Values of Warrior Cultures, Past and Present, as well as numerous other book chapters and articles. She received her doctorate in philosophy from Brown University in 1997.
“It’s very evident that Dr. French is well-prepared to take this job on,” said Tystad. “Her past experiences at CWRU and the Naval Academy, along with her extensive academic research and writing, make her a great fit for the program here.”
French will serve two academic years as the chair and will be responsible for coaching, mentoring, guiding and educating leaders at all levels within CGSC. She will also speak and participate at events to improve the overall academic and leadership experience at CGSC, as well as consult with CGSC and Army University leadership on ethics topics of interest. The ethics chair is also expected to research, write and publish on topics within their area of expertise.
The first General Hugh Shelton Distinguished Visiting Chair of Ethics, Dr. John Mark Mattox (Col., U.S. Army, Ret.), was the first-ever privately funded academic chair in the history of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College. Mattox served from Nov. 7, 2011 until Dec. 5, 2012. Dr. Daniel M. Bell, Jr. was the second chair and served from Dec. 5, 2012 through April 21, 2016. The normal term for the chair is two years, however Dr. Bell’s exemplary service was rewarded with a second term extension.
We salute Dr. French as our “Person of the Month” for March 2017 and congratulate her for being selected as the General Hugh Shelton Distinguished Visiting Chair of Ethics. We look forward to working with her in the upcoming Fort Leavenworth Ethics Symposium April 24-25 and wish her well in her new duties for CGSC.