KEYNOTE SPEAKER

Lieutenant General (Retired) Ben Hodges, the former Commanding General of U.S. Army Europe (2014-2017), currently serves as NATO Senior Mentor for Logistics. He consults for several companies on Europe, NATO, and the European Union, and he is co-author of the book Future War and the Defence of Europe, published by Oxford University Press.

Hodges has a regular media presence on CNN, MSNBC, Fox, BBC, Times Radio, ZDF, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Deutsche Welle, The Daily Telegraph and other media on NATO, US and European security, the Russian War against Ukraine, the greater Black Sea Region, geopolitical issues and regional security, governance, human rights, and other topics.

He was most recently Senior Advisor to Human Rights First, a non-profit, nonpartisan international human rights organization based in New York, Washington D.C., and Los Angeles.  Before joining Human Rights First, he held the Pershing Chair in Strategic Studies at the Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA).  

A native of Quincy, Florida, General Hodges graduated from the United States Military Academy in May 1980 and was commissioned as an Infantry Officer in the U.S. Army.  

After his first assignment as a Lieutenant in Garlstedt, Germany, he commanded Infantry units at the Company, Battalion, and Brigade levels in the 101st Airborne Division, including the First Brigade Combat Team “Bastogne” in Operation IRAQI FREEDOM (2003-2004). His other operational assignments include Chief of Operations for Multi-National Corps-Iraq in Operation IRAQI FREEDOM (2005-2006) and Director of Operations, Regional Command South in Kandahar, Afghanistan (2009-2010).

General Hodges has also served in various Joint and Army Staff positions. From 2012-2014, he served as Commander of NATO Allied Land Command in İzmir, Turkey. His last military assignment was as Commanding General of United States Army Europe in Wiesbaden, Germany, from 2014 to 2017. 

He retired from the U.S. Army in January 2018 and lives today with his wife in Frankfurt, Germany.