Lt. General Dennis McCarthy
Former Assistant Secretary of Defense for Reserve Affairs
(Leadership Boot Camp, I&I Coaching)
Lieutenant General Dennis McCarthy began his Marine Corps service in 1967 as a platoon leader in Vietnam, and completed it in 2005 as Commander of Marine Forces Reserve, having led that force for four years during the Corps’ largest reserve mobilization in its history. His command included 100,000 active duty and reserve Marines at 187 locations around the country. He was responsible for a budget approaching $700,000,000. Most importantly, he was responsible for setting the conditions that enabled Marines to successfully serve their nation in combat in Iraq, Afghanistan and around the world.
After completing his service in uniform, he was Executive Director of the Reserve Officers Association of the United States, an organization of 60,000 members. Responsible for a 25-member national staff, budget and endowment management, and legislative and educational efforts, Dennis led the organization in conjunction with a volunteer Board of Trustees. Operating from its iconic headquarters on Capitol Hill, ROA continued its 90-year tradition of leadership and innovation during Dennis’ tenure.
While serving as Executive Director, Dennis was nominated by President Obama and confirmed by the Senate to be an Assistant Secretary of Defense. As Assistant Secretary of Defense, he was responsible for policy development and execution for over one million members of the National Guard and Reserves of all services. He was also responsible for the activities of the National Committee for Employer Support of Guard and Reserve, a Department of Defense entity tasked with establishing and maintaining positive relationships with the nation’s large and small employers whose support is so essential to members of the Guard and Reserve. His office also supervised activities relating to reserve mobilization, training, and facilities. He worked closely with key budget officials and with Members of Congress and with Congressional Committee staffs.
From 1978 to 1999, Dennis was a civil trial lawyer in Columbus, Ohio. He was Board Certified by the National Board of Trial Advocacy, an Adjunct Faculty member at Capital University Law School, a leader in state and national trial lawyer organizations, and a frequent CLE lecturer and contributor. During this period, he was active in the Marine Corps Reserve and was recalled to active duty as a Marine infantry officer on multiple occasions. He returned to active duty full time in 1999 and served until his retirement in 2005, completing over 40 years of active and reserve military service.
In 2010, he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree by Capital University Law School, and was named the Distinguished Alumnus for 2011. He currently serves on several advisory boards. Prior to his return to government service in 2009, he was Vice Chairman of the Board of Medifast, Inc. (NYSE: MED) and was a member of the Board of Directors of Rivada Networks, Inc.
He is now a Principal in Military Experts, LLC, a consulting firm that combines military expertise with government and business leadership to provide analysis, advice and assessment to business leaders and attorneys.