Gordon Adams is a teacher, policy wonk, writer, and actor. He is professor of international relations at the School of International Service, American University, in Washington, D.C. He also works at Washington's Stimson Center in the budgeting for foreign policy and defense program.
For ForeignPolicy.com, Adams writes a regular column on foreign policy and national security institutions and has a new blog, The Sheathed Sword. His most recent book, with Cindy Williams, Buying National Security: How America Plans and Pays for Its Global Role and Safety at Home, draws on his experience as the senior White House staffer for national security budgeting in the Clinton White House. He continues to be passionate about reversing the trend toward using the military as the leading edge of U.S. global engagement, working with the Obama administration and Congress to discipline defense planning and budgets and strengthen domestic diplomatic and development capabilities. In 2013, Defense News named him as one of the 100 most influential people in U.S. defense.
In his creative life, Adams writes poetry and has an active theatrical career. He has performed in numerous productions over the past four years, including professional appearances as Grand Duke Nicholas in the premier of Hercules in Russia, as Polonius in Hamlet, as Hamm in Endgame, and in the ensemble of The Merchant of Venice with the Shakespeare Theater Company in Washington, D.C. He has also appeared in several community theater productions, including roles as Shelley Wallach in The Bad Friend, Major Metcalf in The Mousetrap, and Ralph Waldo Emerson in The Night Thoreau Spent in Jail.