The Personal Website
Rear Admiral [Ret.] James J. Carey
Admiral Carey OP-ED in Washington Times Newspaper, Veterans Day 2009: RE: Military Voting Rights
Documents & Articles
Family History Database
Personal Coat of Arms
Washington National Debutante Cotillion
The following list contains links to several organizations that Rear Admiral Carey has been a part of during his varied career----- click on any link below to learn more about his involvement.
NATIONAL DEFENSE COMMITTEE:
National Defense Committee was formed in the late 1990’s by Admiral Carey and several colleagues to specifically address what they felt were “narrow focus issues” that were not being adequately addressed or supported by the other military and veterans associations. Key colleagues and associates have been CAPTAIN [Ret.] Sam Wright, JAGC, and Robert Harrison Carey Jr., Former Senate Staff Member to U. S. Senators Spencer Abraham of Michigan and George Allen of Virginia. Several key projects involve military absentee voting, military recruiter “equal access” to college campuses, and re-employment rights for military veterans who leave civilian employment for military service. Admiral Carey serves as Chairman of NATIONAL DEFENSE COMMITTEE, which is headquartered in Northern Virginia.
NATIONAL DEFENSE POLITICAL ACTION COMMITTEE [NATIONAL DEFENSE PAC]:
National Defense PAC was formed by Admiral Carey in the mid-1990’s to support the candidacy of military veterans running for election to the U. S. Congress. Most military personnel, particularly those who serve long active duty careers, have spent a lifetime being transferred all around the world from one military mission to another, and never have the time to establish the many links and relationships that are so very helpful when running for elected office. Upon retirement, when many military veterans for the first time in their lives have the ability and freedom to run for elected office, they find that they do not have a long-standing community relationship with the many citizens necessary to raise money to run for election. Thus, the purpose of NATIONAL DEFENSE PAC is to provide some initial funding to those candidates for elected office that NDP’s Endorsement Selection Board votes to endorse and support. Admiral Carey serves as Chairman of NATIONAL DEFENSE PAC, which is headquartered in Northern Virginia.
GROWING UP IN BERLIN, WI:
The Early Years: Jim Carey was born on April 9th, 1939 [Easter Sunday] at Berlin Memorial Hospital, Green Lake County, WI. The family lived on a farm along the South Bank of the Fox River about 2 miles East of Berlin in the Township of Aurora, Waushara County, just across the Green Lake County/Waushara County Line to the North. Jim’s Dad was a World War I Army Veteran and rural mail carrier for the U. S. Postal Service, his Mom was an Elementary School Teacher and Housewife, and along with an older Sister and Brother, the family farmed a dairy farm. Memories include fishing in the Fox River, hauling hay with horses, planting and picking strawberries, and the normal things that farm kids do in their very early years.
In December, 1941, this farm was sold and the family moved to a new and larger farm only about half a mile west along the South Bank of the Fox River. Moving day was December 7th and Jim can remember being a 2 ½ year old “just trying to stay out of the way” as the family loaded belongings onto the hay wagon for the numerous trips half mile down the road to the new farmhouse. He can remember his older brother Bob going into the house for a drink of water and coming out and saying that he heard on the radio “the Japanese are bombing Pearl Harbor”. Jim recalls not knowing what they were talking about, but that he could understand something very serious had happened because the mood immediately changed and everyone seemed very concerned about what had happened. And of course, it was the beginning of World War II, and thus, a moving day that will never be forgotten.
The new farm was larger and thus there was more work for everyone. A new brother was born a year later, and then two girls were adopted into the family a year or two after that. Jim remembers his time spent with more fishing in the Fox River, hauling hay and combining oats and shucking corn, plus cleaning the barn and milking the cows and later transitioning away from dairy farming to beef cattle. A fond memory was a trip via Greyhound Bus with his Dad to South Saint Paul, MN to buy cattle for the herd from Wertheimer Company at the South Saint Paul Stockyards, and then seeing them arrive on the farm a week later in huge 18-wheeler cattle trucks. He also remembers being able to go with his Dad on his daily rural mail route once each year, and being so amazed at the fact that everyone knew his Dad and they were all so friendly and nice to him. Travel to school was by school bus that made a long pick-up route which meant getting up very early to catch the bus, and for the first 4 years of school, it was in a one-room school called County Normal, which had a teachers training institute attached to it and all 8 grades in one room. Jim still maintains that being in one room where all 8 grades were taught gave him a huge learning advantage and head start in life, since each day, he got to listen to all the other grades being taught and learned much from each.
The Boy Scouts: At age 11, Jim was able to become a boy scout, and this program turned out to be a great opportunity for him, as living on the farm offered limited chances to belong to any of these types of organizations. He truly enjoyed the camping and training and teamwork involved and advanced rapidly. He also was fascinated with the fun of the two weeks at summer camp at Twin Lakes, WI [near Waupaca] each summer. He eventually worked during the summers at the scout camp, first in the kitchen and later as a camp counselor for the entire summer. He went on to become an Eagle Scout with 72 merit badges, a Silver Award Explorer Scout, a Brotherhood Member of the Order of the Arrow, a Junior Assistant Scoutmaster, and he helped form the first-ever camp for blind children which was sponsored by the Wisconsin Lions Clubs in 1954 using the Twin Lakes Boy Scout Camp facilities after the scout camping summer season was finished. Jim later said that his early training in the boy scouts had a large influence on his future success as a naval officer in the U. S. Navy.
Berlin High School:The family sold the farm on the Fox River when Jim was in 8th grade [although they saved some land on the river to later build a cottage there] and moved into Berlin, which made it easier for Jim to participate in athletics. He lettered in Varsity Football, Basketball, and Track, where he played right halfback on the football team, center on the basketball team, and ran the 120 yard high hurdles in track. He started as right halfback on offense in football his senior year, readily admits to being a marginal second-stringer in basketball having only made the team his senior year [where he was the shortest center in the conference], and having had reasonable success in the high hurdles where, his senior year, he placed 2nd in the Sectional Meet at Ripon, which qualified him to go to the State Track Meet in the State Capitol in Madison where, he readily admits, he “ate cinders” and placed 8th out of 8 in his first 120 yard high hurdle heat there and thus ended his high school hurdling career. All this was, however, quite a respectable performance, since Jim was a year or more younger than most of his classmates, having started school a year early in a country school, and thus all during his Senior Year in High School, he was only age 16 until the last 6 weeks of school, and thus throughout high school was competing against young men who were a year and two years older than he was at an age when one year made a lot of difference in one’s athletic ability and physical size and maturity.
Jim was also involved in class leadership in Berlin High School and was elected to the Prom Court his Junior Year and then elected as President of the Senior Class his Senior Year.
In 2013, Jim Carey was selected to be included in the Inaugural Class of Distinguished Berlin High School Graduates to be so honored by inclusion in the Berlin High School "Inspiration Wall". This Program's focus and intent was to display the photo and a summary narrative of Berlin High Schools most successful alumni. The program is jointly sponsored by the Berlin Area Historical Society [BAHS] and Berlin High School. Click here for a link to the BAHS website page that describes this program. Jim's photo and Inspiration Wall narrative are shown below (coming soon):
Jim graduated from Berlin High School in 1956 and received scholarship offers from Beloit College in Beloit, WI [known as “The Amherst of the Midwest”] and Northwestern University in Evanston, IL. He accepted the offer from Northwestern because of it’s high academic standing among the nations colleges and universities, and began his Freshman Year there in the fall of 1956 as a candidate for a Bachelors Degree in Business Administration with a major in Marketing. He pledged Zeta Psi Fraternity, founded in 1847. He also performed for three years in the annual musical-comedy show called WAA-MU, which during his years included future actors Richard Benjamin, Paula Prentice, and Ann Margaret and TV Sportscaster Brent Musburger. Jim was selected as an Outstanding Student Leader during the 1959 May Week Festival at Northwestern, was elected President of his fraternity his Senior Year, and graduated with his Bachelor of Science Degree in 1960. He later went on to study for a Masters Degree in Business Administration at Northwestern University’s highly acclaimed Kellogg School of Management in Chicago.
THE REAGAN ADMINISTRATION:
Jim gained an interest in national public policy and national leadership during his student years at Northwestern University and as a junior officer in the U. S. Navy. He met Governor Ronald Reagan at a Navy Military Association Convention in Buffalo, NY during the 1980 Presidential Campaign and was so impressed with Reagan’s views on government and policy and international affairs that he volunteered to work in the election campaign in Veterans for Reagan. As Jim likes to say “to succeed in politics at the national level, first your candidate has to win”----- and Ronald Reagan won in 1980 and was inaugurated as the 40th President of the United States in January, 1981. By March, the new Reagan White House had contacted Jim about service in the Administration based on Jim’s navy and maritime backgrounds and after the usual months of FBI background checks and vetting of his professional career and verification of his TOP SECRET Navy Security Clearance, he was asked to join the Administration as a Commissioner of the Federal Maritime Commission. Jim headed for Washington, DC in May 2981 where he spent three months getting briefed on the position and the issues confronting the agency. The President announced his appointment in September of 1981; the United States Senate held confirmation hearings in early October, and on October 8th, Jim was sworn into office by Congressman John Porter of Illinois, Jim’s hometown Congressman from Illinois. In 1983, he was elected as the Commission Vice Chairman by unanimous vote of his fellow Commissioners, a position he would hold for the next six years. In 1985, upon the expiration of his fixed term of office, President Reagan appointed Jim to a 2nd term, and after another U. S. Senate Confirmation Hearing, Jim was sworn into a 2nd term of office as Commissioner and Vice Chairman of the agency. In 1989, newly elected President George Herbert Walker Bush appointed Vice Chairman Carey as the Chairman of the agency, a position he held until the expiration of his term of office in early 1991. Upon finishing his 9 years of service under two U. S. Presidents, Jim Carey was awarded the Federal Maritime Commission Gold Medal for Exceptional Service, the highest award bestowed by the agency. President Bush lauded Jim’s military and federal service as exemplary, an example to all and a credit to his family.
During Jim’s service in the Reagan Administration, Jim was approached by the Presidential Personnel Office in the White House about forming a group of the Presidential Appointees that would be self-administered and self-organized and that would regularly bring all the Senate-confirmed Presidential Appointees together for professional training and professional interaction with a view towards facilitating the various agencies working closer together. Jim was elected President of this group of over 600 Presidential Appointees and served in that position for the next six years. As the Reagan Administration finished its historic service in January 1989, the organization was transitioned into the Reagan Administration Alumni Association made up of all who served during the Reagan Presidency, an organization that continues on today with over 4,000 members worldwide, with Jim Carey on it’s Board of Directors.
THE GEORGE H. W. BUSH ADMINISTRATION:
In 1989, newly elected President George Herbert Walker Bush appointed Vice Chairman Carey as the Chairman of the Federal Maritime Commission, a position he held until the expiration of his term of office in early 1991. Upon finishing his 9 years of service under two Presidents, Jim Carey was awarded the Federal Maritime Commission Gold Medal for Exceptional Service, the highest award bestowed by the agency. President Bush lauded Jim’s military and federal service as exemplary, an example for all, and a credit to his family.
KNIGHTS TEMPLAR - UNITED STATES OF AMERICA [SMOTJ]:
The Knights Templar is a military knighthood Christian Chivalric Order initially founded by nine knights of noble extraction in France almost 900 years ago. Their initial mission was to protect Christian Pilgrims traveling to the Holy Land and the Holy City of Jerusalem to worship. The Order was disestablished in 1307 by the King of France and then reconstituted by Emperor Napoleon in France in 1801. The formal name of the Order is The Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem, thus the initials SMOTJ. Admiral Carey was first invested into the Order in 1984 in Oslo, Norway through NATO when he was serving in the military rank of Commander in the U. S. Navy. He then became involved in the Order in the United States as a member of the Priory in Washington, DC, where he was Prior [President], and then later became Grand Prior [National President] of the United States of America. He holds the highest rank of the Order, that of Knight Grand Cross, and also has been awarded the National Order of Merit. The Knights Templar Order of the USA is a member of the International Knights Templar [OSMTH], where the Order works closely providing humanitarian aid all around the world and is recognized by the United Nations “in special consultative status”. The Order is also involved in a worldwide program called SILENT KNIGHT, which performs individual anonymous charitable good works for the less fortunate.
KNIGHTS TEMPLAR WORLDWIDE [OSMTH]:
The Knights Templar Worldwide [or International] is the worldwide body linking together all the Knights Templar Grand Priories [nations] of the World. It’s formal name is Ordo Supremus Militaris Templi Hierosolymitani, thus it’s identifying initials of OSMTH, with the words being the Latin language for The Sovereign Military Order of the Temple of Jerusalem, with the original Knights Templar having been founded in the year 1118 in France by nine knights of noble extraction. The Order was reconstituted in 1801 by the Emperor Napoleon in France, and today gathers twice annually in different world locations to formulate international policies and manage the humanitarian aid and charitable programs of the Order. OSMTH is recognized in special consultative status by the United Nations and as such, works closely with the U.N. on various humanitarian aid efforts throughout the world. Admiral Carey was elected the International Grand Commander of the Order [Chief Executive Officer in corporate terms] in 1998, and then re-elected to that position for a 2nd term of office in 2001. In 2004, he was elected to be the Grand Master [Chairman in corporate terms] of the Order, a position he will hold through 2012.
THE FLAG & GENERAL OFFICERS’ NETWORK [TFGON]:The Flag & General Officers’ Network was founded in 1995 by two retired Navy Admirals, Rear Admirals Charles “Chuck” McGrail and James “Jim” Carey, for the purpose of providing a linkage between all military flag and general officers and to help them maintain the friendships and professional linkages established through decades of military service and their mutual achievement of flag or general officer rank. The group gathers at informal social “networking receptions” in the Greater Washington, DC area and members attend from all across the USA and from various parts of the world. The organization also provides a central communications source where members can circulate their resumes among the 1500+ membership when they are seeking to change employment, and where organizations, corporations, and associations seeking to locate flag or general officers for potential employment opportunities have a central source of contact. When Admiral McGrail unexpectedly passed away in 2001, Major General [Ret.] Alan Youngman was selected to replace him as National Co-Chairman. Admiral Carey continues to also serve as a Founder and National Co-Chairman. The organization is headquartered in Northern Virginia
U. S. FEDERAL MARITIME COMMISSION [FMC]:
In 1981, after President Reagan was elected and sworn into office as the 40th President of the United States, Admiral Carey [then Commander Carey] was contacted by Presidential Personnel asking him to serve as a Commissioner of the U. S. Federal Maritime Commission. Following the necessary interviews and background vetting, President Reagan nominated James J. Carey to be a Commissioner of the Federal Maritime Commission in September, 1981. The United States Senate held confirmation hearings on the appointment and then voted to confirm Mr. Carey in early October, 1981, whereupon he was sworn in during ceremonies held in Washington, DC on October 8, 1981. In 1983, Commissioner Carey was elected Vice Chairman of the Commission, and in 1985, he was reappointed by President Reagan and Senate-confirmed to a 2nd term of service on the Commission. In 1989, newly elected President George Herbert Walker Bush appointed Vice Chairman Carey to serve as Chairman of the Commission, a position he held until leaving the Commission for the corporate world in 1991. In recognition of his service, Chairman Carey was awarded the Federal Maritime Commission’s Gold Medal Award for Exceptional Service, the highest award given by the agency, and President Bush recognized Chairman Carey’s service as truly dedicated and patriotic.
THE WASHINGTON SCHOLARS FELLOWSHIP PROGRAM:
Admiral Carey founded this program in the mid-1980’s during his service in the Reagan Administration. He saw a need to bring young dedicated college-age “best & brightest” men and women to the nation’s capitol with a view towards them having an opportunity to experience and learn what a career in national service would be like and to show them firsthand that they CAN play a role in our national leadership and in the formulation and execution of national public policy. Early intern class sizes ranged from 3-12 and their placement was in various federal agencies, national public policy organizations, and Congressional staffs and offices. This continued after Admiral Carey left federal service, although with smaller class sizes depending upon the level of funding raised and the time available to manage the program. The program experienced a major shift in direction in the late 1990’s with the strong support of Mr. Stephen Hartwell, Chairman of the Board of the Washington Mutual Funds, and it was through Steve Hartwell’s strong support, encouragement, and financial endowments that the program was significantly enlarged to accommodate classes of 25-30 interns each year. As these classes grew larger, the need for more focused oversight and administration also grew and in 2006, the Future Leaders for America Foundation was formed to provide this management oversight and mentoring. Admiral Carey serves as the Founder and Chairman of the Board of Future Leaders for America Foundation, as well as the Founder of the Washington Scholars Fellowship Program.
THE NATIONAL DEBUTANTE COTILLION OF WASHINGTON, DC:
Admiral Carey first became involved in this prestigious National Debutante organization in 1984 when his daughters Lynn Margaret Carey and Sarah Ann Carey were formally introduced to Washington, DC society through the National Debutante Cotillion. Each year, 40 young ladies in their early college years are selected from among applicants throughout the entire nation to be “official debutantes” at this annual event, founded in the nation’s capitol in 1947. Over time, Admiral Carey and his wife Arlene have become more involved in supporting the organization and in 2005 were appointed by the Cotillion Chairman to serve as Regional Chairmen for Virginia, a position they continue to hold today. Also in 2005, based on his involvement in the Washington Scholars Internship Program and as Chairman of the Future Leaders for America Foundation, Admiral Carey, with the support and encouragement of Debutante Cotillion Chairman Dame Mary Stuart Montegue Price, formed the Washington Scholars Floor Committee Delegation, made up of young men who have graduated from the Washington Scholars Program. These young men thus become involved in all the activities and programs and social functions surrounding the National Debutante Cotillion events in Washington, DC throughout the year, where they assist the Cotillion Leadership in ensuring that each class of National Debutantes is welcomed and honored with dignity, respect, and recognition for their selection and participation as National Debutantes.
ZETA PSI FRATERNITY OF NORTH AMERICA:
While a Freshman at Northwestern University, Evanston, IL in 1956, Jim Carey was invited to join the prestigious Zeta Psi Fraternity of North America. While invited to join several fraternities, Jim chose Zeta Psi because they stressed a lifelong involvement in the fraternity and it’s good works in support of humanity in it’s two host nations of the USA and Canada. He held numerous offices at the Northwestern Chapter [the Omega Chapter] including Chapter President and then following his military service in Vietnam and settlement into a more structured stateside life in the USA, he asked to become more involved in the fraternity and it’s activities throughout North America. What followed was 50 years of involvement, first as a Regional Director, then later on the International Board of Directors of either the fraternity or the educational foundation or both, this board service covering over 30+ years. Jim went on to hold all the senior elected offices of the fraternity and the foundation, including International President, and over the years has been selected to receive every national award that the fraternity has to give. In recent years, Zeta Psi has established The Admiral James J. Carey National Award for Leadership, the first recipient of that award being Admiral Carey himself.
FUTURE LEADERS FOR AMERICA FOUNDATION, Inc.:
In 2005, Admiral Carey observed the tremendous success and growth of the Washington Scholars Internship Program and determined that an IRS-recognized oversight and administration foundation was needed to provide for future growth and expansion, as well as the necessary fundraising structure to support the program if it was to continue to succeed and be able to accept a larger number of interns. Thus was formed the Future Leaders for America Foundation, Inc. of Washington, DC, to provide that oversight and management and to provide a corporate structure from which to manage the future growth of the program as well as to provide a venue for the location of other similar programs focused on providing opportunity for experience and qualifications and credentialing for more and more of America’s best & brightest young men and women to participate in the national leadership of our nation. Admiral Carey continues to serve as the foundation Founder and Chairman of the organization, which is headquartered in Washington, DC.
THE ADMIRAL JAMES J. CAREY FOUNDATION:
After a lifetime of success and involvement in federal government service, the U. S. Navy, service in two Presidential Administrations, national public policy, numerous national and international organizations and associations, national leadership, military knighthood orders, fraternal organizations, and youth leadership groups, Admiral Carey made the decision that he did not want to stop his work in these efforts when he “departs the planet”. His solution was to form a foundation that would use the assets he accumulated in his life of national service to support these same organizations after his death. To do this, he wanted agreement and “buy in” by his family, and approached his wife and daughters with his plan to ensure they are cared for during their lifetimes while the same assets that provided for their care could then be used to fund the Admiral James J. Carey Foundation after they are gone. Thus came into being The James J. Carey Trust for the purpose of providing for his family after his death, and a specific plan to donate the assets of that trust in phased fashion as it’s beneficiaries passed on. Both this Trust AND the Admiral James J. Carey Foundation are now in place. Admiral Carey’s daughters, Lynn and Sarah, are involved in the advisory management of both structures to provide them with the necessary training over time to be able to carry out the documented written donor intent of the Admiral that was the primary stated purpose for both the establishment of both the Trust and the foundation. The Foundation is now in the process of applying for IRS 501.c.3 approval for the foundation and the preparation of donor intent agreements that are to govern any and all the endowments to be made by the Admiral James J. Carey Foundation.
UNITED STATES NAVY:
Following graduation from Northwestern University in 1960 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration, Jim set about beginning his business career only to soon be approached by destiny in the form of the Draft Board and the Selective Service laws. Shortly after being called to the Chicago District Offices of the Draft Board for medical re-evaluation of a high school football injury, Jim found himself reclassified 1-A and a check with the local Draft Board told him he was going to be drafted in 30 days. The next day, he enlisted in the U. S. Navy [Oct. 1961] and within 6 months, he was marching through the snow at Navy Officers Candidate School in Newport, Rhode Island. After graduation and commissioning as an ENSIGN in 1962, he was assigned to the U. S. S. TOPEKA [CLG-8], a guided missile cruiser homeported in Long Beach, CA and this turning point in his life including two Western Pacific deployments to the South China Sea and duty in the Vietnam War. While the hours at sea were long, duty in the Navy was exciting and Navy operations were, as Jim puts it “where the action is”, and thus began a 34 year Navy career that included duty on cruisers, destroyers, amphibious assault ships, and working with the U. S. Marine Corps, Navy Amphibious Seabees, and Navy Beachmasters in Assault Craft Units on both coasts and the Naval Beach Group in Little Creek. As happens with all naval officers, time marches on and the excitement of navy operations duty ultimately turns to staff duty on headquarters staffs and service as the Inspector General, along with several tours on Pentagon Staffs and selection to the rank of Rear Admiral. By the time his career was completed after 33 years, 11 months, and 22 days, Jim had held 7 different commands including Readiness Command Region SIX at the Washington Navy Yard commanding over 10,000 navy and marine corps personnel in a 4 state area during Operations DESERT SHIELD & DESERT STORM in Iraq. Among his personal decorations are four awards of the Legion of Merit. Jim’s retirement ceremonies were held in Leutze Park at the Washington Navy Yard with his Navy OCS Classmate and lifelong friend, Admiral Mike Boorda, Chief of Naval Operations, as the Officiating Senior Officer. Never one to leave a job undone, Admiral Carey continues to serve in several national defense and homeland security organizations and Pentagon/DOD consulting positions, including as National Co-Chairman of THE FLAG & GENERAL OFFICERS’ NETWORK.
OPERATION DESERT STORM:
When DESERT SHIELD/DESERT STORM took place in 1991, Jim was already a Rear Admiral and in command of over 10,000 officers, sailors, and marines in Readiness Command Region SIX at the Washington Navy Yard in Washington, DC. He volunteered to serve in Iraq and his 3-Star Boss told him “Jim, if you were a doctor or a nurse, I’d take you today, but we’ve got all the Admirals we need over there right now”. Bottom line is that REDCOM SIX had over 2500 officers, sailors, and marines sent to serve in Iraq, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, and at the end of the war--- Kuwait. Jim finally got there at the end of the war on a trip to Kuwait, in time to fly into the airport at Kuwait City and see the huge clouds of black smoke from all the burning oil fires that Saddam Hussien’s troops had lit as they retreated back to Baghdad. Jim said it looked like one of the scenes from the 70’s movie “Apocolypse Now”. So while his career took him from Vietnam as a Navy ENSIGN to Kuwait as a Rear Admiral, his involvement in DESERT STORM was limited to that trip and having 2500 of his troops serve in the Iraq theater of operations.
In 1996, after Jim had retired from the Navy, and during the time he was serving as the Knights Templar Grand Prior of the United States [i.e. their National President], he was contacted by the Catholic Cardinal of the Chaldean Catholic Church in Iraq requesting a meeting with the Templars. As Jim likes to say, when a lad who grew up in a small town in Wisconsin serving mass at St. Josephs Church hears from “A Prince of the Catholic Church”, one does NOT SAY I’M BUSY. Jim contacted a friend in Chicago, Fellow Templar Dan Healy, asking for his help to raise some money to fund the trip. Dan raised the money and the two of them made two trips, one to Jordan to meet with some of the Church Officials to determine their bonifides, and then a 2nd trip later to Jordan and then overland to Baghdad for their audience with the Cardinal, Dr. Raphael Bidawid, who turned out to be an absolutely charming man and who sought help from the Templars to secure food, clothing, medicines, and school supplies for the Chaldean Christians in Iraq. Remember that Iraq was under international and United Nations sanctions at the time, so there were shortages of everything. Jim and Dan had several meetings with the Cardinal with a view towards being able to help these less fortunate innocent victims of the situation there. They also met with the local Bishops of the Latin Church, the Greek Orthodox Church, the Anglican Church, and with the Senior Islamic Imam for Baghdad [THAT was an interesting meeting all by itself]. Also the Red Crescent [the Islamic equivalent to the Red Cross]. Plus Cardinal Bidawid arranged meetings for them with Ambassador Hamdoon, the Iraqi Ambassador to the United Nations [the meeting was in a revolving restaurant in that big “space needle building” in downtown Baghdad], and with Tariq Aziz, the Prime Minister of Iraq, who was a member of the Chaldean Catholic Church. Of interest, the meeting with Prime Minister Aziz, which was to last 20 minutes, lasted an hour and 20 minutes as he was fascinated that the Knights Templar wanted to help his people and his church. Jim says he also looked him right in the eye when they first met said “Admiral, pray tell what are you doing here---- we know you were involved in DESERT STORM”. Jim’s answer, he says, is a very long story that you can ask him about one day, but needless to say it worked out well to have their 20 minute meeting last for well over an hour. All these meetings and the entire trip took 9 days in Iraq plus another 2 on each end of the trip in Jordan. Jim tells of their crossing the Iraq-Jordan border the morning they left Iraq, only to find out that U. S. War Planes attacked Iraqi in Basra at the very same time----- he has often wondered what might have happened if the Iraqi Government had decided to prevent him from leaving----- and has always presumed that he got across the border before anyone in the Government knew he was gone. In any event, it has always made for lots of “what if” thoughts.
When Jim and Dan returned through Jordan, Jim gave a speech at a dinner in Amman, Jordan for over 40 Jordanians---- half Islamic and half Christian---- about the Templars. He was pleasantly surprised to find them all very friendly and mostly supportive, once they learned that the modern day Templars are no longer “Crusader Knights” and are totally focused on humanitarian aid to the less fortunate. Upon return to Washington, DC, both Jim and Dan launched into a very aggressive effort to try to provide food, clothing, medicines, and school supplies to Cardinal Bidawid in Baghdad, only to encounter an absolutely impenetrable roadblock at both the U. S. State Department and the United Nations to helping anyone in Iraq for any reason. The issue was NOT that people were starving and dying---- rather it was that the sanctions prevented anyone from providing any help. When Jim and Dan pointed out that movie stars and former Carter Administration Attorney Generals seemed to be able to travel to Iraq and bring food and medicine without impunity, it did no good. So sadly, after making these two trips to Iraq and after over 3 years of trying, Jim and Dan had to give up on the effort because the bureaucracies would not budge and neither Jim nor Dan intended to risk prison no matter how well meaning and life-saving their intentions were. Truly an incredible story and an incredible effort by these two Americans---- one a retired Navy Admiral and the other a Korean War Marine Corps combat veteran. As Jim likes to say “Pretty heady stuff for a small town Catholic farmboy from St. Joseph’s Church in Berlin, WI”.
HIGH IQ ORGANIZTION MEMBERSHIPS:
Unlike most of the other narratives on this website which have been written by the team that has put it all together, I decided to write this one myself because it’s an interesting journey that only I am aware of. Something happened between my freshman year in high school, when my generation was first subjected to IQ tests, and in the ensuing years of training and education and life’s experience through my graduation from Northwestern University, in which I went from just being smart to being a lot smarter. And as my high school classmates and Northwestern University fraternity brothers will certify, “I hid it well”. In high school, I was too involved in year-round high school athletics and weekend boy scout training to have much time or, admittedly, interest in my classes. Although I found the math and science classes interesting----- I found athletics and scouting and activities involving operations much more interesting. The same was true in college, where I admittedly did just what I had to do to stay in school while being involved in a full calendar of intermural athletics, fraternity leadership, class leadership, social events, student leadership, musical comedy and drama involvement, and related “operational efforts” that I discovered I had a natural inclination for and which I enjoyed immensely more than sitting in some boring lecture hall listening to some tenured professor drone on and on using the same lesson plan he’d used for 30 years and with about as much interest and excitement in what he was teaching as one experiences from watching paint dry or grass grow. But some of it truly “rubbed off” and was assimilated, as I was to learn a few years later when the Selective Service System began to chase me with the military draft to ensure I had the opportunity to go to Vietnam and do my bit for freedom [I think that’s how they put it].
I’d heard enough from my Dad, who served in France in World War I [YES, World War I----- everyone always says “you mean World War II” and I always have to clarify “NO, World War I----- Irish guys marry late in life, my dad was born Oct. 31, 1892, and he enlisted in the Army in 1917 at age 25 and fought with the 325th Remount Squadron in France, where being a horse trainer and racer by profession, he ended up with the mission of training and providing horses to tow cannon and artillery and wagons in support of the combat operations there----- so YES, it WAS World War I]. But I digress. To say my Dad was NOT enamored with the Army or war in France or combat operations with horses and artillery is an industrial strength understatement----- and he did not want his son Jim sleeping in a foxhole and freezing his butt off [he got his wish----- I was to learn that Vietnam and the Tonkin Gulf and the South China Sea does NOT freeze]. So, long story short, with the Draft Board breathing down my neck, I enlisted in the U. S. Naval Reserve where, as Seaman Recruit Carey, I had to take the Navy Battery of IQ Tests so they knew what career paths I had the brains to function within. And that’s where I found that I’d really gotten smarter---- A LOT SMARTER---- due to my ensuing high school classes and Northwestern University expensive education. In fact, I knocked the ball out of the park with scores that literally allowed me to apply for any rating in the Navy that I wanted to.
Now the IQ story gets interrupted a bit here, since beginning an enlisted Navy career is not like it’s portrayed in movies about the Navy. There were no airplane rides or ships at sea or 20,000 leagues under the sea------ instead it was boring classes and boring training and shining brass and swabbing decks, and after a few months of that, I requested an appointment with the Executive Officer to tell him I had my college degree from Northwestern and was willing to extend for the required amount of time to attend Officers Candidate School. It was early 1962 and the nation was already beginning a significant buildup for Vietnam and the X.O. told me he would look into it. He requested my personnel records from the Administrative Office and when he saw my IQ scores, he called me in and said “I’m approving your application for OCS” and that began my trek to becoming a Naval Officer and 34 years of service “from Seaman Recruit to Admiral”. And to my surprise and delight, I truly loved the Navy. GREAT People, a GREAT sense of mission and teamwork and of service to the nation, and I also loved it because it was very VERY MUCH OPERATIONAL. I enjoyed ship operations at sea and found I had a special ability in being able to understand relative motion and spatial relations at sea and soon was the Officer of the Deck Underway with Fast Carrier Task Forces and being in that role on my first ship for General Quarters [Battle Stations] and Underway Replenishment and Special Sea and Anchor Detail which manned the bridge for leaving and entering port. Truly exciting stuff where in my opinion, my IQ paid high dividends and I was able to perform effectively and well. I also became aware that I had a special gift that even I find hard to explain, but it is there nevertheless. In complex problems and in the Navy, during at-sea operations, I discovered that I had a special ability to think 4 or 5 or 6 “moves ahead” of others, to the degree that I was prepared for situations and operations that others had not even thought of. Now whether this has anything to do with a high IQ, I don’t have a clue, but it’s an ability that I found I have in addition to a high IQ, and it has served me exceptionally well over time, whether it is with the Navy at sea, or in management, or in government relations, or in politics----- anything “operational” where I needed to think 6 moves ahead of the other guy, I found I was able to do it. But I repeat, whether that has anything to do with a high IQ, I’m not sure, but it has served me well in my various careers.
Which leads me back to the topic at hand ------- High IQ Organization Memberships. One day in the 1980’s, I was on an airplane flight to who-knows-where and was reading the in-flight magazine and there was an article about Mensa, the High IQ Society [only one of several, I was to learn later], and when it cited the IQ level for membership, I recalled my Navy Test Battery and thought to myself “I think my scores were higher than that”. So I jotted down the e-mail address and sent Mensa a message asking about membership qualifications, learning that not only did I qualify, but they would accept my Navy Test Battery Scores so long as they were transmitted to them from my Navy Admin Office, which I did. And thus began my involvement for the next quarter of a century with High IQ Societies. I learned that Mensa Membership was for those whose IQ was in the 98th percentile of the population. There was, of course, another higher level organization known as Intertel, which was for those in the 99th percentile, and they also would accept my Navy Scores, so now I belonged to two such organizations. That led me to two higher organizations that required an IQ in the 99.9th percentile, the Triple Nine Society and the International Society for Philosophical Enquiry [ISPE---- a.k.a. The Thousand]. I applied for ISPE first, and they would not accept my Navy scores, instead requiring me to take their own IQ test. Needless to say, since I had not been in formal classes for over 20 years, I wondered if my brain might have deteriorated, but forged ahead anyway and took their test and passed and was accepted into membership. I learned later that the Triple Nine Society would accept my ISPE membership as proof of my being in the 99.9th percentile and thus, after sending my dues, was now a member of 4 high IQ societies. And that is the story of how and when it all happened.
Membership in these organizations has been interesting. Each puts out a magazine or newsletter or journal, and the discourse in each is interesting. If there is a common theme I’ve picked up over the years, it’s “if I’m so smart, how come I’m not rich”. But I’ve also learned that, while there are some in these organizations who are on the outer edges of “brainy” and who dwell on esoteric and even weird tangents, most are pretty normal and easy to talk to and inquisitive and, in my experience, enjoyable. I’ve even met one gent that, as we talked, I learned he felt he also had a sixth sense to be able to think 5 and 6 moves ahead in operational matters. Now my Navy friends who’ve known me well for decades, when they learn I belong to these High IQ organizations, are all quick to say “Gee Jim, you hide it well”, and that’s just fine with me. I don’t want to be a brainiac or viewed as weird or over the edge. And so long as I can continue to trudge along, NOT have to sit in classrooms any longer, and keep my focus on operations matters and leadership and the things that interest me, I can hopefully also bring this brainpower to these efforts and make them more effective as a result.
If these organizations are of interest to anyone reading this narrative, I’ve listed the URL’s below should you wish to contact them direct to see if you qualify for membership------ like I’ve outlined above, I’ve found them interesting, the organizations don’t cost a lot of money, and the members are unique and uniquely talented, :