Lt. Gen. Sean MacFarland, USA Ret.

Lt. Gen. Sean MacFarland, USA Ret.

LTG Sean MacFarland retired from the Army in 2018 and joined General Atomics Electromagnetic Systems Group as Vice President for Weapons Programs.  In addition to serving as a senior fellow at the Association of the US Army’s Institute for Land Warfare, he is a non-resident senior fellow of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard University.   

During the course of his military career, LTG (Ret) MacFarland served in armor and cavalry units at every echelon. He led an armored cavalry platoon at Fort Bliss, Texas, commanded an armored cavalry troop in the “Fulda Gap” in Germany, an armored battalion in Germany and the Balkans, an armored brigade combat team in Germany and Iraq, the 1st Armored Division at Fort Bliss and the III Armored Corps in Iraq and at Fort Hood, Texas.  He also served as Commanding General of JTF-North in support of US border security at Fort Bliss, Deputy Commanding General of US Forces in Afghanistan and Deputy Commanding General/Chief of Staff, US Army Training and Doctrine Command.

As a brigade combat team commander in Ramadi, Iraq, he is credited with fostering the Sunni Arab “Awakening” movement, which was instrumental in turning the tide of the war. While commanding III Corps, he also commanded all coalition forces in the war against ISIS in Iraq and Syria from 2015 to 2016, during which time coalition forces seized the initiative, recaptured nearly half of the enemy’s territory and set the conditions for the enemy’s final defeat.

He is a 1981 graduate of the United States Military Academy, the Command and General Staff College, the School of Advanced Military Studies, and the Industrial College of the Armed Forces (Eisenhower School).  He also earned a Master of Science degree in Aerospace Engineering at Georgia Tech.

His many decorations included the Combat Action Badge, Parachutist and Air Assault Wings, two Defense Distinguished Service Medals, three Army Distinguished Service Medals and twenty-two other medals for his achievements in peace and war.  In 2016, TIME Magazine listed him as one of the “100 Most Influential People in the World.”