Rear Admiral Eric A. McVadon, U.S. Navy (Retired)
Rear Admiral McVadon was the U.S. defense and naval attaché at the American Embassy in Beijing from August 1990 until July 1992. He retired from the Navy in 1992 and is consulting, researching, writing, and speaking in North America and Northeast Asia on Asian security affairs, Chinese military matters, and specific security issues involving China, Taiwan, Japan, Mongolia, South Asia, the Korean Peninsula, and the South China Sea. He works extensively with the U.S. policy and intelligence communities and the Department of Defense, directly and indirectly. Additionally, Admiral McVadon is part-time senior advisor for Asia-Pacific studies at the Institute for Foreign Policy Analysis of Cambridge, Massachusetts, and Washington, D.C.; senior national security advisor for DynCorp National Security Programs of Alexandria, Virginia; senior consultant for the Center for Naval Analyses, Areté Associates, and other organizations; and a non-resident fellow at the Atlantic Council of the United States. He is a 1958 graduate of Tulane University and was designated a naval aviator in 1960. His writings appear in professional books, periodicals, and journals.
Early in his almost thirty-five-year Navy career, Admiral McVadon served with three Pacific Fleet Patrol Squadrons flying P-2 and P-3 antisubmarine aircraft and completing six deployments to the Far East and the Aleutians, including three deployments with the Seventh Fleet, air operations from Cam Ranh Bay during the Vietnam War, and operations in the Indian Ocean from Diego Garcia and Iran. In 1975-76, he commanded Patrol Squadron 40, a Pacific Fleet P-3C aircraft squadron. As a junior officer in the 1960s, he was the P-3 aircraft project officer in VX-1, and assistant navigator of the attack carrier USS Shangri-La (CVA-38).
In Washington, in mid-career, he held several policy and planning positions on the Navy Staff, was in the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs (1977–80), and was the Navy member of the Staff Group of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (1980–82). As a flag officer he was deputy director of the Strategy, Plans, and Policy Division on the Navy Staff (1985) and deputy director of the Defense Mapping Agency (1985–86). Overseas, he commanded Naval Station Keflavik, Iceland, from 1982 to 1984. He then returned there as Commander Iceland Defense Force, the U.S. and NATO flag officer in Iceland, from 1986 to 1989, before his final navy assignment in Beijing.
Admiral McVadon is a distinguished graduate of the Naval Postgraduate School, Naval War College (Command & Staff), and National War College; has a master's degree in international affairs from George Washington University; and studied Icelandic and Chinese at the Foreign Service Institute. His awards include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal with oak leaf cluster, Defense Superior Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters, Legion of Merit, Air Medal, and Navy Commendation Medal. The president of Iceland in 1989 conferred on him the Order of the Falcon.