Former Commander of the United Nations Command, Combined Forces Command, and United States Forces Korea
Vincent K. Brooks is a career Army officer who retired from active duty in January 2019 as the four-star general in command of all U.S. Forces in Korea, where he concurrently commanded United Nations Command as well as the Republic of Korea – U.S. Combined Forces Command comprising over 650,000 Koreans and Americans under arms.
General Brooks, who goes by “Vince,” is a 1980 graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point, the first class to include women, and he led the 4,000 cadets as the cadet brigade commander or “First Captain.” A history-maker, Vince is the first African American to have been chosen for this paramount position, and he was the first cadet to lead the student body when women were in all four classes (freshman or “plebe” to senior or “first classman”). He is also the eighth African American in history to attain the military’s top rank – four-star general in the United States Army. Throughout his career he has been a change agent who is known for leaving organizations even better than he found them.
Vince holds a Bachelor of Science in Engineering from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point; a Master of Military Art and Science from the prestigious U.S. Army School of Advanced Military Studies at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas; was a National Security Fellow at the Harvard University John F. Kennedy School of Government; and also holds an honorary Doctor of Laws from the New England School of Law as well as an honorary Doctor of Humanities from New England Law | Boston.
His areas of expertise include: leadership in complex organizations, crisis leadership, risk management and mitigation, building cohesive trust-based teams, strategic mindset, international relations, governance, social responsibility, diversity and inclusion, and public communications.
Vince is a combat veteran and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Additionally, he is a Director with Diamondback Energy Inc., Vice Chairman of the Gary Sinise Foundation Board of Directors, Director and rising Chairman of the Korea Defense Veterans Association, and is a visiting Senior Fellow with the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, a Distinguished Fellow with both the Clements Center for National Security and also the Strauss Center for International Security and Law at the University of Texas, and an Executive Fellow with the Institute for Defense and Business.
Vince, currently residing in Austin, Texas is married to Carol P. Brooks, DSc, MA, a retired Physical Therapist who is now an adult Educator.