General Mattis is widely known within the U.S. military as the most revered Marine Corps officer in a generation. With a reputation for candor, a career of combat achievements, and a library that once spanned 7,000 books, Gen. Mattis has a record of over 41 years of public service. Modern military historians chronicle him as one of America’s great soldier-scholars. In March 2013, he ended his service as the eleventh commander of U.S. Central Command, where he was responsible for U.S. military activities in one of the world’s most volatile regions, including Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan.
Commissioned a second lieutenant in 1972, Mattis has commanded at every level in the Marine Corps. As a lieutenant colonel, he commanded 1st Battalion, 7th Marines during the first Gulf War. As a brigadier general, he commanded Task Force 58, which, shortly after 9/11 conducted an amphibious assault to seize the airfield at Kandahar, Afghanistan. During the invasion of Iraq, Major General Mattis commanded the 1st Marine Division on the “march up” to Baghdad. Before his posting to USCENTCOM, Gen. Mattis commanded U.S. Joint Forces Command, becoming one of only a few general officers to hold two four-star billets.
Previous recipients of the Benjamin Franklin Award include Henry A. Kissinger, Robert D. Kaplan, Walter Russell Mead, Fouad Ajami, Niall Ferguson, Charles Krauthammer, John R. Bolton, and Philip Zelikow.
FPRI’s 2013 Annual Dinner will be held on Monday, November 18, 2013 at the Westin Hotel, Philadelphia. Seats and tables are available to FPRI Partners (see partnership details for complete list of benefits) as well as to Corporate Sponsors. Individual tickets are available for purchase at $500, while tables of ten are available at $4,500. For more information, contact Eli Gilman at 215-732-3774, ext. 255 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. To become a Partner of FPRI, sign up here.
About the Foreign Policy Research Institute
FPRI was founded in Philadelphia in 1955 on the premise that “a nation should think before it acts,” as founder Robert Strausz-Hupe put it. A 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, FPRI is devoted to bringing the insights of history, culture, and geography to bear on the development of policies that advance U.S. national interests. Unique among think tanks, FPRI offers professional development for high school teachers, providing graduate-level conferences in US and world history and international relations.