Jean-Louis Georgelin

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Jean-Louis Georgelin
File:Nicolas Sarkoky Bastille Day 2008 n2.jpg
Jean-Louis Georgelin and Nicolas Sarkozy

Jean-Louis Georgelin (b. 30 August 1948 in Aspet, Haute-Garonne) is a French general. He has been Chief of the Defence Staff ("Chef d'état-major des armées", CEMA) between 4 October 2006 and 25 February 2010, and was made Great Chancellor of the National Order of the Legion of Honour on 9 June 2010.


After nine years at the Prytanée National Militaire, Georgelin joined Saint-Cyr in 1967.

As a lieutenant, he was chief of section at the école d'application de l'infanterie in 1975 and 1976, responsible for the formation of non-commissioned officers. He served in the 153rd infantry regiment as a captain.

As a commander he graduated from the United States Army Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth and then from the Institute of Higher National Defence Studies (IHEDN) in Paris.

From 1985 to 1988, as a lieutenant-colonel, he was in charge of a class at Saint-Cyr (promotion Cadets de la France Libre).

He then served at the chief of staff of the Army at the financial department from 1988 to 1991. He was aid to the chief of cabinet of the Prime Minister from 1994 to 1997. From 1998 and 2002 he served at the general staff of the Army, directing the "plans, programmes and evaluations" division.

Georgelin was personal chief of staff of President Jacques Chirac from 25 October 2002 to 4 October 2006. He was promoted to Army General on 3 October 2003, and was promoted to Chief of the Defence Staff by the ministerial council on 20 August 2006.

He became the Great Chancellor of the French National Order of the Legion of Honour by the ministerial council on 9 June 2010.Conseil des ministres du 9 juin 2010, mesures d’ordre individuel


  • Grand officier of the Légion d'Honneur
  • Officer of the Ordre national du Mérite
  • Great Cross of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany
  • Commandeur of the Legion of Merit

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