Bill Smullen was appointed as the Director of National Security Studies at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs in June of 2003. He is also Maxwell’s Senior Fellow in National Security and a member of the faculty of Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications as a Professor of Public Relations.
Prior to his appointment at Syracuse University, he was the Chief of Staff to Secretary of State Colin L. Powell and of the U.S. Department of State beginning in January 2001. As principal advisor to the Secretary, he was responsible for monitoring and evaluating the formulation and implementation of departmental policies. He was also involved in the planning and development of concept strategy associated with foreign policy matters.
A professional soldier for 30 years, he retired from the U.S. Army in 1993. His military career included a series of infantry and command and staff assignments at the platoon, company, battalion, brigade and division levels, as well as several public affairs positions including Media Relations Officer at West Point and Chief of Media Relations for the Department of the Army. Overseas Army tours took him to Korea, Panama and twice to Vietnam. His military schooling included the Army’s Command and General Staff College and the Army War College. His military citations include the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star Medal, the Army Meritorious Service Medal, the Air Medal, the Combat Infantryman’s Badge and the Parachutist’s Badge.
His last assignment on active duty was Special Assistant to the eleventh and twelfth Chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral William J. Crowe, Jr., and General Colin L. Powell. Upon leaving active duty, he became the Executive Assistant to General Powell, assisting with the writing and promotion of his best-selling autobiography, “My American Journey,” published in 1995. From 1993 to 2001 he had daily responsibility for managing the General’s private office and professional activities. Beginning in 1997 he doubled his responsibilities by becoming the Chief of Staff for America’s Promise—The Alliance for Youth, which General Powell chaired from May 1997 to January 2001.
Among his career accomplishments, he has been elected to Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications Hall of Fame, the University of Maine ROTC Hall of Fame, and was chosen as the recipient of the University of Maine 2007 Alumni Career Award, which is the highest honor presented by the University of Maine Alumni Association. He received the 2007 Public Relations Society of America’s Lloyd B. Dennis Distinguished Leadership Award.
He earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Business and Economics from the University of Maine in 1962 and a Master of Arts Degree in Public Relations from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University in 1974. An accomplished speaker, he appears before audiences nationwide on subjects of contemporary and topical interest. Featured topics includes those from his book, “Ways and Means for Managing Up.”