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John Gordon Kester Edit Profile

John Gordon Kester, American lawyer. Bar: District of Columbia Bar 1964, United States Court Military Appeals bar 1965, Supreme Court of the United States Court bar 1968. Recipient Distinguished Civilian Service award Army Department, 1971; medal for Distinguished Public Service Department Defense, 1979.


Kester, John Gordon was born on June 18, 1938 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, United States. Son of Gordon John and Frances Ruth (Polk) Kester.


University of Wisconsin (Bachelor of Arts, 1959). Université d'Aix-Marseille, France (Fulbright Scholar). Harvard University (Bachelor of Laws, magna cum laude, 1963).

Harvard University (Bachelor of Laws, magna cum laude, 1963).


Worked at Williams & Connolly. Admitted to the bar, 1964, District of Columbia. 1968, United States. Supreme Court.

Phi Beta Kappa; Phi Kappa Phi. Member, 1961-1963 and President, 1962-1963, Harvard Law Review. Author: "Soldiers Who Insult the President," Harvard Law Review, June 1968.

"Constitutional Restrictions on Political Parties," Virginia Law Review, May, 1974. "The Law Clerk Explosion," Litigation, Spring, 1983. "The Future of the Joint Chiefs of Staff," AEI Foreign Policy and Defense Review, March 1980.

"Do We Need the Service Secretary?" Washington Quarterly, Winter, 1981. "Designing a United States. Defense General Staff," Strategic Review, Summer, 1981.

"Some Myths of United States. Extradition Law," Georgetown Law Journal, April 1988. "State Governors and the Federal National Guard," Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy, winter 1988.

Visiting Lecturer in Law, Duke University, 1968. Assistant Professor of Law, University of Michigan, 1968-1969. Law Clerk to Mr. Justice Black, United States.

Supreme Court, 1963-1965. Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army, 1969-1972. The Special Assistant to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of Defense, 1977-1978.

Awarded Decoration for Distinguished Civilian Service, Department of the Army, 1971. Department of Defense Medal For Distinguished Public Service, 1979. Member: Board of Visitors, United States.

Air Force Academy, 1979-1981. Chemical Warfare Review Commission, 1985. Academic Advisory Board, United States.

Naval Academy, 1978-1982. Council on Foreign Relations, 1977—. Board of Zoning Appeals, Alexandria, Virginia, 1975-1977.

Regional Selection Panel for White House Fellows, 1985-1990. Advisory Committee of Nancy Reagan Drug Abuse Fund, 1986-1990. Program Committee, Supreme Court Historical Society, 1988-1991.

Board of Directors, Historical Society of The District of Columbia Circuit, 1990—. Vice Chairman, Defense Science Board Task Force on MX Missile Environmental Impact, 1980-1982. Contributing Editor, Washingtonian Magazine, 1980—.

Military Logistics Forum, 1984-1988. Member, Army Science Board, 1995—. Member: The District of Columbia Bar (Member, Legal Ethics Committee, 1982-1988).

American Bar Association (Member, Sections on: Litigation. Criminal Law; International Law). American Society of International Law.

Fellow, American Bar Foundation. Military: Captain, Judge Advocate General's Corps, United States. Army, 1965-1968.


Member of the board visitors United States Air Force Academy, 1979-1981. Member of advisory board United States Naval Academy, 1980-1983. Member President' Chemical Warfare Review Commission, 1985.

Director History Society of District of Columbia Circuit Served to captain Army of the United States, 1965-1968. Member American Bar Association, District of Columbia Bar Association (legal ethics committee 1982-1988), American Society International Law, Council Foreign Rels., Phi Beta Kappa.


Married Mary Elizabeth Foust, June 17, 1961 (divorced 1972). Children: Robert Gordon, Charles Forrest. Married M. Kathleen Carpenter, May 19, 1984 (divorced 1993).

1 child, John Halford.