George F. Ward, Jr.



George Ward has been at the Institute for Defense Analyses, where he coordinates the Africa Program, since 2011. In his research, he focuses on African defense, security, and resource issues.  He is editor of IDA’s Africa Watch, a weekly e-newsletter.

From 2005-2011, he was Senior Vice President for International Programs at World Vision, a large international Christian humanitarian agency.  He led a group responsible for the design and management of development and relief programs in over 80 countries. From 1999-2005, he was Vice President and Director of the Professional Training Program at the United States Institute of Peace.  In 2003, Ward was detailed to the Department of Defense and served in Iraq as coordinator for humanitarian assistance.

Ward was a Foreign Service Officer for thirty years, from 1969-1999. He was ambassador to Namibia from 1996-1999, where he led a program that resulted in the elimination of the threat of land mines and unexploded ordnance. As acting assistant secretary and principal deputy assistant secretary of state for international organizations from 1992-1996, he managed U.S. policies on the United Nations and on peace operations.  As deputy chief of mission in Germany from 1989 to 1992, Ward played a senior role in the negotiations that led to German unification. In earlier assignments in Germany, Italy, and Washington, he specialized in political-military, security, and arms control questions. He was earlier a counterintelligence officer in the Marine Corps and Marine Corps Reserve, serving in the United States and Vietnam and reaching the rank of Major.

Ward is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Rochester and holds an M.P.A., with concentration in systems analysis, from Harvard University.