Bobby Ray Inman

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Retired U.S. Navy Admiral Bobby Ray Inman is a member of the Board of Directors of the coal company Massey Energy.[1] He is also the Interim Dean of the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas, is a former Deputy Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, a former Director of the National Security Agency (NSA), a former director of Naval Intelligence, and a former Vice Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency.[2]

Massey Energy

In December 2010, Massey Energy's Board of Directors announced that its Chairman and CEO, Don Blankenship, would retire from the company at the end of 2010. Company president Baxter F. Phillips Jr. was named as the new CEO. Admiral Bobby Ray Inman, Lead Independent Director on the Massey Board, was named as Non-Executive Chairman.[3]

Clinton Nominee for Secretary of Defense

Inman was named December 16, 1993 by President William Jefferson Clinton to head the U.S. Department of Defense and replace Secretary of Defense Les Aspin. [1] Inman's January 19, 1994, withdrawal from the nomination was controversial in that it was said that he "complained about criticism from the press" [2] and it was claimed that he "may have revealed sensitive information about a U.S. Israeli dispute when he explained why he was withdrawing." [3] Inman was replaced February 7, 1994, by William J. Perry as Clinton's nominee. [4]


After graduating in 1950 from the University of Texas, Inman joined the Navy, "where his grasp of intelligence work saw him embarking on a steady climb through the ranks.

"After a stint as director of Naval Intelligence, he was appointed to the top spot at the National Security Agency." President Ronald Reagan "tapped" Inman "to be the deputy director of the CIA in the warming years of the Cold War.

"He retired in 1982, putting his skills to work in the business world, seeing companies like Dell and Oracle through their initial public offerings as a member of their boards of directors, and investing in start-up technology companies." [5]

According to his November 2004 University of Texas at Austin profile, Inman also graduated from the National War College and served 31 years in the U.S. Navy. ...

"After retirement from the U.S. Navy, he was chairman and chief executive officer of the Microelectronics and Computer Technology Corporation (MCC) in Austin, Texas for four years and chairman, president and chief executive officer of Westmark Systems, Inc., a privately owned electronics industry holding company, for three years. Inman also was chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas from 1987 through 1990.

"His primary activity since 1990 has been investing in start-up technology companies as chairman and a managing partner of Gefinor Ventures. Inman is a member of the board of directors of Massey Energy Company and several privately held companies. He is a trustee of the American Assembly, the California Institute of Technology and the Center for Naval Analysis. He also is a director of the Public Agenda Foundation and is a member of the National Academy of Public Administration."

When named by President Clinton to be Secretary of Defense, Inman's biography stated that:

"News accounts have referred to him as 'simply one of the smartest people ever to come out of Washington or anywhere,' (Omni, 11-84) and 'a superstar in the intelligence community [and] a tough-minded administrator' (Newsweek, 2-16-81)."
"Inman was born in 1931 in the small town of Rhonesboro, Texas. After graduating from high school at age 15 and the University of Texas at age 19, he joined the Naval Reserve in 1951 and was commissioned an ensign in 1952. He then spent 19 years as an analyst for Naval Intelligence, serving on an aircraft carrier, two cruisers and a destroyer, as well as in a variety of onshore assignments.
"In 1972, Inman graduated from the Naval War College and became the executive assistant to the vice chief of naval operations. He then rose to Assistant Chief of Staff for Intelligence of the Pacific Fleet in 1973, Director of Naval Intelligence in 1974, and Vice Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency in 1976. He was named director of the National Security Agency in 1977, and served four years at the head of this major agency. As he rose through these posts, Inman won the Distinguished Service Medal, the Navy's highest non-combatant award, and the DIA's Defense Superior Service Medal for 'achievements unparalleled in the history of intelligence.'
"In 1981, Inman was nominated by President Reagan to be the Deputy Director of Central Intelligence. He was easily confirmed, and served in that position until resigning in March 1982. At that time, he became the first naval intelligence specialist ever to earn the rank of four-star Admiral. Senator David Boren said of Inman's time at the CIA that, 'it was principally Admiral Inman who first showed that the congressional oversight process could work.'"


Published Works

  • With William J. Perry and Joseph S. Nye, Jr., "Lessons from the Gulf War," Washington Quarterly Vol. 15, No. 1 (Winter 1991). Co-author with Bobby Inman, Joseph S. Nye, Jr. & William Perry.
  • With William J. Perry and Joseph S. Nye, Jr., "American Strategy in the 1990s," Aspen Quarterly Vol. 3 No. 2 (Spring 1991).
  • With William J. Perry and Joseph S. Nye, Jr., "Third World Threats," Aspen Quarterly Vol. 2, No. 3 (Summer 1990).


  1. Massey Energy, "Board of Directors", Massey Energy website, accessed April 2010.
  2. "Bobby R. Inman", Lyndon B. Johnson School School of Public Affairs website, accessed April 2010.
  3. Ken Ward Jr., "Breaking news: Don Blankenship to retire," Coal Tattoo, December 3, 2010
  4. Trustees, California Institute of Technology, accessed June 20, 2010.
  5. Trustees, American Assembly, accessed January 29, 2008.
  6. Strategic Renaissance 21 Leadership, organizational web page, accessed August 18, 2017.

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