About The Gazette Search Back Issues Contact Us    
The newspaper of The Johns Hopkins University March 5, 2007 | Vol. 36 No. 24
Secretary of State Rice Taps Eliot Cohen to Serve As Counselor

The State Department announced last week that Secretary Condoleezza Rice has asked SAIS Professor Eliot Cohen to serve as her counselor.

Cohen will be on leave of absence for at least one year from SAIS, where he is the Robert E. Osgood Professor of Strategic Studies, director of the Strategic Studies Program and director of the Philip Merrill Center for Strategic Studies.

In a message sent Friday to Strategic Studies students, Cohen wrote, "It is an honor to be asked to serve one's country at any time, but particularly during wartime. I hope I can do some good. I definitely know that I will take to the State Department a stock of knowledge and inspiration that has come from my years spent dealing with you, and with those who came before you, and for that I shall always be deeply grateful."

Dean Jessica P. Einhorn said, "Professor Cohen is the greatest of mentors to scores of his students who choose public service. While we will all surely miss him at SAIS, we honor and support his decision to give counsel to Secretary Rice and colleagues, who are engaging in the important work of our time."

The State Department's Web site describes the counselor as "a principal officer who serves the Secretary as a special advisor and consultant on major problems of foreign policy and who provides guidance to the appropriate bureaus with respect to such matters. The Counselor conducts special international negotiations and consultations, and also undertakes special assignments from time to time, as directed by the Secretary."

Cohen, who joined SAIS in July 1990, holds a doctorate in political science from Harvard and is the author of numerous books and articles. His most recent book is Supreme Command: Soldiers, Statesmen and Wartime Leadership (2002), which won the inaugural Huntington Prize, administered by the John M. Olin Institute for Strategic Studies at Harvard.

He formerly taught at Harvard and the U.S. Naval War College, served on the policy planning staff of the secretary of defense and directed the U.S. Air Force's Gulf War Air Power Survey. He is a member of the Defense Policy Board and other governmental and private advisory committees.

Cohen will begin spending much of his time at the State Department immediately and is expected to assume the post officially in April, when he finishes his classroom teaching.

Tom Keaney will serve as acting director of the Strategic Studies program in Cohen's absence.


The Gazette | The Johns Hopkins University | Suite 540 | 901 S. Bond St. | Baltimore, MD 21231 | 443-287-9900 |