News | May 25, 2023

JFSC Hosts Senior Leader Offsite and Board of Visitors

By LT Bradley “Grenade” Williams, USN Joint Forces Staff College

This week the Joint Forces Staff College, located on Naval Support Activity Hampton Roads in Norfolk Virginia, was proud to host the National Defense University (NDU) Senior Leader offsite. The offsite is an annual gathering of senior leaders from across the university’s five components, designed to assess and address university-wide topics. Topics this year included budget updates, staffing, and facilities.

During these sessions several common themes emerged, capturing a sense of NDU’s potential direction and warranting more detailed planning and consideration for their effect on FY23-29 resource allocation decisions.

Additionally, the National Defense University Board of Visitors met Wednesday, 24th 2023, at the Joint Forces Staff College for its semi-annual full-board meeting. The Board of Visitors is a SECDEF-appointed panel charged with providing independent advice and recommendations on accreditation compliance, organizational management, strategic planning, resource management, and other matters of interest to the National Defense University. The meeting this quarter marks the first time board members gathered at the Norfolk campus. The meetings included a State of the University address from NDU President Lt Gen Michael Plehn, USAF.

The board covered a wide range of topics to include access to mental health, student demographics, ethics, and other board business. These public sessions were open to the attendance via livestream and in person. Board members also participated in a tour of the Joint Forces Staff College and Ike Skelton Library.

The board shall be composed of not more than 12 members who are eminent authorities in the fields of defense, management, leadership, academia, national military strategy or joint planning at all levels of war, joint doctrine, joint command and control, or joint requirements and development.

Current Board Members

  • General Norton Schwartz USAF (Ret)—Board Chair
  • Ambassador Bismarck Myrick (Ret)—Vice Chair
  • Vice Admiral Jody Breckenridge USCG (Ret)
  • Lieutenant General Charles Hooper USA (Ret)
  • Dr. Chris Howard
  • Dr. Suzanne Logan
  • Colonel Nora Ramirez Marcos USA (Ret)
  • Dr. DJ Patil
  • The Honorable Tim Roemer
  • The Honorable Debra Wada


NDU continues to be the premier institution for advanced Joint Professional Military Education (JPME) and is instrumental in educating our most elite military officers and their civilian counterparts.

We at the Joint Forces Staff College appreciate each of the Board members and Senior Leaders for taking the time to visit our campus to share their experiences and knowledge over the past two days.