At a Glance
- Career History: Senior vice president and director of studies at the Center for a New American Security (2007-2009); Senior vice president (2003-2007) and vice president (2000-2003) at Hicks and Associates, Inc.; Deputy assistant secretary of defense for requirements, plans and counterproliferation policy (1997-2000); Assistant professor at Duke University (1992-1997)
- Hometown: Waterloo, Iowa
- Alma Mater: John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, Master's and Ph.D. in public policy, 1988; Stanford University, B.A. with honors in economics, 1981
- Spouse: Adele Miller
- DC Office: Public Affairs, 1400 Defense Pentagon, Washington DC 20301-1400, #703.545.6700
- Web site
Path to Power
James Miller, often referred to as Jim, grew up in Waterloo, Iowa before heading west to California, where he obtained his bachelor's degree in economics from Stanford University.
The ambitious youth went on to get his master's and Ph.D in public policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. He then worked for the late Les Aspin, then secretary of defense, as a senior professional staff member of the House Armed Services Committee for four years before becoming an assistant professor at Duke University.
As the principal deputy under secretary of defense for policy, Miller is among the top defense and national security experts grappling with U.S. security and global stability in an unpredictable world. While contemplating practical, on-the-ground strategies in Iraq and Afghanistan, Miller and his colleagues must also juggle thorny ethical issues like appropriate use of U.S. military force, non-lethal weapons, and the repercussions of modern military technology.
In his response to questions from the Senate Armed Services Committee ahead of his confirmation, Miller said he expected to serve in important advisory roles for all Pentagon policy reviews, as well as provide support to "responsibly end the war in Iraq; ensure that the U.S. develops and employs a more effective strategy in Afghanistan and the surrounding region; prevent nuclear and WMD proliferation; combat terrorism; adapt the U.S. military for 21st-century challenges; and strengthen America's relationships with key partners and allies."
At the Department of Defense, Miller continues to work under his previous boss Michele Flournoy, and also sees some familiar faces from the Harvard Kennedy School, including Professors Ashton Carter, now the under secretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics, and Michael Nacht, currently the assistant secretary of defense for global strategic affairs.
Miller donated $1,500 to Hillary Rodham Clinton's presidential campaign in September 2007. A year later, in early October 2008, he pledged his support to Barack Obama with $1,000.