Dr. James M. Ludes is the Executive Director of the American Security Project (ASP), a think-tank in Washington, DC. ASP was founded in 2006 to educate the public on a broad range of national security issues and the value of a principled approach to security.
From November 2008 to February 2009, Dr. Ludes was a member of President-elect Obama’s Transition Team. During this time he participated in the Agency Review Team working inside the Department of Defense (DOD) to identify critical issues that would need to be tackled by the new administration. In January, he took on the additional responsibility of running the confirmation team for DOD nominees selected for the roles of Deputy Secretary of Defense; Under Secretary of Defense for Policy; Comptroller; and General Counsel.
From 2002 to 2006, Dr. Ludes was Legislative Assistant to Senator John Kerry for defense and foreign policy. During that time, he also coordinated defense policy issues for Senator Kerry’s 2004 presidential campaign—assisting in the development of policies on military end-strength, force structure, and improved benefits for military families and veterans.
Prior to his work in the Senate, Dr. Ludes was Editor-in-Chief of National Security Studies Quarterly (NSSQ), a defense and national security journal. During his tenure, Dr. Ludes transformed the NSSQ from a student-run journal into a professional publication receiving considerable attention in the media and the policy community.
Dr. Ludes earned his Ph.D. in history from Georgetown University. His dissertation, A Consistency of Purpose: Political Warfare and the National Security Strategy of the Eisenhower Administration, was completed in 2003. He is editor of Iraq Uncensored (forthcoming) and co-editor of two previous books: Attacking Terrorism (2004) and Twenty-First Century Proliferation (2001). He is a native of Manchester, CT, and received his bachelor’s degree in history and modern languages from Providence College in 1993. Dr. Ludes is a Term Member of the Council on Foreign Relations and was a Manfred Woerner Seminar participant in 2000.