NEWPORT, RI, August 2020. DIILS is pleased to announce that Ms. Amber Ward has been appointed as the permanent civilian Deputy Director of the Defense Institute of International Legal Studies (DIILS).
Prior to her promotion, Ms. Ward served as the Maritime Program Director at DIILS, from July 2018 to June 2020, responsible for designing, planning, and administering world-wide maritime security cooperation programs and strategies for DIILS. She also managed the Legal Aspects of Maritime Security Operations resident course. She was previously on staff at DIILS from 2014 to 2017, initially serving as an International Operations Officer, before promoting to Operations Officer. During that period, she managed the development and delivery of all maritime programs, and led a wide spectrum of security cooperation engagements around the world.
In July 2018, prior to joining DIILS as a civilian, Ms. Ward completed 13 years of active duty service in the U.S. Coast Guard. Her active duty experience includes assignments to both legal and operational commands. Prior to her DIILS assignment, she served as a staff attorney at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Office of General Counsel, within the Operations and Enforcement Law Division, advising on maritime operational law, counter-terrorism, and disaster and emergency response authorities. As a staff attorney at U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters, she worked within the Office of Claims and Litigation, and later within the Office of Maritime and International Law, where she advised on the legal aspects of maritime security and law enforcement operations, search and rescue, and maritime governance, and served on several U.S. delegations to various bodies of the United Nation’s International Maritime Organization. As Logistic Department Head at Sector Delaware Bay, a large shore-side operational unit withe a three-state area of responsibility, she led the delivery of all mission support functions and served as commanding officer of military personnel for all administrative and disciplinary matters. At Sector Southeastern New England, she managed environmental response operations, and safe and secure use of waterways. She continues to serve as a Commander in the U.S. Coast Guard Reserve, currently assigned as the Senior Reserve Officer of Sector Boston. Her personal military awards include the Defense Meritorious Service Medal, the Coast Guard Meritorious Service Medal, Coast Guard Commendation Medal (with operational distinguishing device), and Coast Guard Achievement Medal. Ms. Ward holds an undergraduate degree in Environmental Sciences (honors), a Master of Studies in Environmental Law, and a Juris Doctor (honors) with a focus in maritime law.
A native of Amesbury, Massachusetts, Ms. Ward and her family consider Rhode Island “home.”
DIILS is indeed fortunate to have retained her talents and looks forward to her leadership and contributions.