General Paul J. Kern, USA (Ret.)
Paul J. Kern, GEN, US Army (Ret) is a Senior Counselor with The Cohen Group. He served as President and Chief Operating Officer of AM General from August 2008 through January 2010 and is currently a Director with ITT, ITT-Exelis and iRobot Corporation, and a member of the CoVant Board of Managers. Since retiring from the Army in 2005, he has held the Class of 1950 Chair for Advanced Technology at West Point, was a Vice President for Battelle, and a Director on the Anteon and EDO boards.
GEN Kern retired after almost 38 years with the US Army as the Commanding General of the Army Materiel Command. The command of more than 50,000 personnel has worldwide responsibility for supply and maintenance support to the Department of Defense, manages the Army depot system, and conducts research for all the ground and rotary wing equipment. In June 2004, the Secretary of Defense tapped GEN Kern to lead the military’s internal investigation into the abuses at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq, a compelling assignment that he handled with integrity and resolve. Previously he served four years as the Department of the Army Military Deputy for Research, Development and Acquisition. In 1996-97 he was the Commanding General of the 4th Infantry Division, Mechanized, where they developed the organization, tactics, techniques, and equipment implemented in today’s networked force. From 1993 to 1996 he was the Senior Military Assistant for Secretary of Defense Bill Perry and played a key role in International deliberations in South America, the former Soviet Union, the Middle East, and the Balkans. In 1991 he led the 2d Brigade of the 24th Infantry Division in the attack into Iraq. He began his career commanding operational units as a platoon leader and troop commander in the Blackhorse Regiment in Vietnam.
GEN Kern graduated from West Point in 1967 with a Bachelor of Science degree. He holds Master Degrees in Civil and Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan and was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2006. He was a National Security Fellow at the J.F. Kennedy School, Harvard University and is currently a member of the Defense Science Board.
He has a unique career which blends technical expertise, combat operations, program management, policy development, and advisor to senior political leaders.