David R. Stilwell is the Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs.
Prior to his appointment as Assistant Secretary on June 20, 2019, he served in the Air Force for 35 years, beginning as an enlisted Korean linguist in 1980, and retiring in 2015 in the rank of Brigadier General as the Asia advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs.
He served multiple tours of duty in Japan and Korea as a linguist, a fighter pilot, and a commander. He also served as the Defense Attaché at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, People’s Republic of China, 2011-2013.
Most recently, Mr. Stilwell served as the Director of the China Strategic Focus Group at U.S. Indo-Pacific Command in Hawaii 2017-2019 and an Adjunct Senior Fellow at the East West Center in Honolulu from 2016-2019.
He earned a B.S. in History from the U.S. Air Force Academy (1987), and a Master’s Degree in Asian Studies and Chinese language from the University of Hawaii at Manoa (1988) and is a 2009 graduate of the Executive Leadership program at the Darden School, University of Virginia in Charlottesville, Virginia. He was awarded the Department of Defense Superior Service Award in 2015. He speaks Korean, Chinese and limited Japanese.