James Mattis – Bio, Wiki, Awards, Net Worth, Wife, Family and Resignation

In the wake of policy changes that have swept through the United States of America, since the election of the forty-fifth president – Donald J. Trump, some people chose to vacate their governmental positions as a result of a difference in the policies they consider important; one of such people is the war veteran, James Mattis. The retired Marine served in three major wars and is a highly decorated veteran, he is known for his intellect and how quickly he was able to rise through the ranks in his military career. Keep reading to learn more about James Mattis and what led to his eventual resignation from his career in the civil service.

James Mattis Wiki

On the 8th of September, 1950, Lucille Mattis and John West Mattis welcomed their child, James Norman Mattis, to the world. He was born in Pullman, Washington and has two brothers. He spent most of his childhood in Washington, a childhood that was characterized by a lot of studying and no television.

For high school, James Mattis attended Richland High School where he graduated from in 1968. In 1971, he graduated from Central Washington University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in History, and went ahead to earn a Masters of Art (M.A) from the National War College of the National Defense University in 1994; his M.A is in International Security Affairs.

His career in the military began in 1969, with him enlisting in the Marine Corps Reserve. In a short time, he rose through the ranks and thanks to his intellect, he shone at his job. The habit of reading that was imbibed in his childhood was taken to his adulthood; he revealed that he read a lot on the history of the world and the history of the military, with a personal library that boasts of thousands of books. As a Commander, he expected the Marines he commanded have an understanding of the culture and history of any region they had been deployed to.

James Mattis served in the Persian Gulf War, in the Afghanistan War and the Iraq war. While making a comment on the time he spent in Afghanistan, he said that it was fun to shoot men in that country because of their misogyny and how much fun fighting is; these comments elicited anger from the general public. He retired from the Corps in 2012 as a highly decorated General and as the commander of the United States Central Command.


In the entirety of his military career, James Mattis has been awarded a total of 28 times and has received three badges, the first of which is the Defense Distinguished Service Medal. Some of the other military awards he has won are Joint Meritorious Unit Award, Iraq Campaign Medal and Polish Army Medal. The awards he has won are not limited to his work in the military and he has earned six civilian awards as well.

Resignation as the U.S. Secretary of Defense

James Mattis
James Mattis (Middle) With President Donald Trump & Vice President, Mike Pence: Image Source

When Donald Trump met James Mattis in 2016, he was impressed by the type of man he was and believed he would be a great part of the country’s government as the Secretary of Defense. There was, however, a hindrance to the nomination as the minimum amount of years in retirement required to have that position is seven years and as at the time of his nomination he had been in retirement for just 3 years; nevertheless, James received a waiver.

He served as the Secretary of Defense for two years before he resigned from the position because of their differences in foreign policy. This sparked a controversy especially as his resignation letter was made public much to the annoyance of the president. James Mattis was succeeded by Patrick M. Shanahan.

His Net Worth

James Mattis has an estimated net worth of $7 million. This is a sum total of his earnings from the forty-four years he spent in the military. The pension he receives from his military career has also added to this.

Read Also: Why Was Rex Tillerson Fired or Did He Resign? What Is He Doing Now?

James Mattis’ Wife and Family

Sometime in 1981, James Mattis was supposed to marry a woman named Alice Clark, but she called off the wedding. According to her, she did it to save his career, as he was actually going to leave the military for her. After that incident, he never married again, which earned him the nickname, Warrior Monk.  He has no children as well.


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