Biography

David H. Petraeus is a retired four-star Army general and former director of the Central Intelligence Agency. Currently, he is a non-resident senior fellow at Harvard Kennedy School’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs where he is working with Center Director Graham Allison to explore renewed U.S. and North American competitiveness. Their work focuses on major technological, scientific and economic dynamics that are spurring renewed U.S. and North American competitiveness, exploring in particular the impact of the ongoing revolutions in energy, information technology, advanced manufacturing, and life sciences.

Petraeus served as CIA director from September 2011 to November 2012.  Prior to that, he spent 37 years in the Army, including roles as commander of U.S. and international military forces in Afghanistan, commander of U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), and commanding general of the multi-national force in Iraq.

Since leaving the CIA, Petraeus has taken on several positions.  In addition to his Belfer Center fellowship, these include serving as chairman of the KKR Global Institute, a component of a major New York investment firm, teaching at Macauley Honors College at CUNY as well as at the University of Southern California, and supporting several non-profit organizations that serve veterans.

Petraeus holds a PhD in international relations from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton.  He was among the top graduates in his class at West Point in 1974, where he later served as an assistant professor, and he graduated first in the class of 1983 at the US Army Command and General Staff College. He later was a fellow at Georgetown University’s Institute for the Study of Diplomacy.

He has received numerous U.S. military, State Department, NATO and United Nations medals and awards, and he has been decorated by 12 foreign countries.

Last Updated: May 10, 2017, 2:29pm

Awards