2012 Higher Education Risk Management Conference - Speakers Biography
The George Bush School of Government and Public Service Organization, Texas A&M University
James Olson was born and raised in Iowa. He has a B.A. degree in mathematics and economics and a J.D. in international law from the University of Iowa. He served in the U.S. Navy aboard guided missile destroyers and frigates, reaching the rank of lieutenant commander. He joined the Central Intelligence Agency in 1969 and was a member of the clandestine service until 2000. His overseas assignments included the Soviet Union, Austria, and Mexico. At CIA headquarters Mr. Olson was at various times Chief of Soviet Operations and Chief of Counterintelligence. After retiring from the CIA in 2000 he became a senior lecturer at the George Bush School of Government and Public Service, where he teaches classes on intelligence, counterintelligence, and international crisis management. Mr. Olson and his wife Meredith (also a CIA officer) are the parents of two sons and a daughter. In his spare time Mr. Olson enjoys baseball (avid fan), biking, foreign languages, and reading. He is the author of "The Ten Commandments of Counterintelligence" and "Fair Play: The Moral Dilemmas of Spying."