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Leaders
Assistant Division Commander
Brigadier General James A. Ryans

Brigadier General Ryans enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1988 and was commissioned in 1995. He served as a Platoon Commander and Executive Officer at 1st Battalion 8th Marines, deploying with the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit, participating in Operation SILVER WAKE, a noncombatant evacuation operation of Albania (1997). He also served as Commanding Officer of Company F, and as Commanding Officer of Headquarters and Service Company in 2d Battalion 8th Marines, deploying to combat in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM with Task Force Tarawa (2003), and Afghanistan in support of Operation ENDURING FREEDOM (2004). At the battalion level, he commanded 3d Battalion 6th Marines and deployed to Okinawa Japan as the first battalion to support the Unit Deployment Program in ten years (2013). Brigadier General Ryans was Commanding Officer of Headquarters Battalion, and Commanding Officer 8th Marine Regiment, and became Deputy Commander of Task Force Southwest, deploying in support of Operation FREEDOM'S SENTINEL and the Resolute Support (RS) Mission in, Afghanistan (2020).


Brigadier General Ryans’ staff assignments include serving as an Officer Selection Officer, focused on increasing the number of enlisted Marines that become officers, (1998-2001). He also served as an instructor and as department head for the Ground Combat Department, Marine Aviation Weapons and Tactics Squadron 1 (MAWTS-1) (2004-2007). Brigadier General Ryans later became the Regimental Assistant Operations Officer, Operations Officer, and the Regimental Executive Officer of 8th Marine Regiment (2008-2012). During this assignment, he again deployed in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM and Operation ENDURING FREEDOM. Brigadier General Ryans became a member of the Joint Staff serving as the Principal Deputy Legislative Assistant to the Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff (2015-2017). He served as the Future Operations Officer for II Marine Expeditionary Force (2017-2018), and as the Senior Military Assistant to the Secretary of the Navy (2020-2021).


Brigadier General Ryans is a graduate of the Infantry Captain Career Course (Fort Benning,
Georgia-2001), Marine Corps Command and Staff College receiving a Master of Military
Studies as a distinguished graduate (2008), United States Naval War College receiving a Master of Arts in National Security and Strategic Studies (2014-2015), the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School (2018) and was a Military Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York (2021). He graduated from Jacksonville University with a Bachelor of Science in Physics (1995). He is married with four children.