COL John Merriam

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COL John Merriam

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Colonel John “J.J.” Merriam is a U.S. Army Judge Advocate, currently serving as the Staff Judge Advocate for America’s First Corps. COL Merriam was originally commissioned as an Armor officer, and transitioned to the Judge Advocate General’s Corps once he completed law school.

COL Merriam has served as the principal legal advisor to commanders at all echelons in both conventional and special operations forces, including 1st Brigade, 25th Infantry Division (Light), 12th Combat Aviation Brigade, 10th Special Forces Group (Airborne), 10th Mountain Division (Light), and 7th Army Training Command. In these roles, he provided operational legal advice during Operation Iraqi Freedom, Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Odyssey Dawn, and to the Joint Multinational Training Group-Ukraine. He assumed duty as the Staff Judge Advocate for I Corps at Joint Base Lewis-McChord in summer 2022. He has also served as a Trial Counsel, Defense Counsel, Chief of Military Justice, and Branch Manager.

COL Merriam graduated from the University of Notre Dame in 1996 with a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in Government (International Relations) and History, with a concentration in Eastern Europe and Russia. After service as an Armor officer, he graduated with honors from the Case Western Reserve University School of Law with a Juris Doctor and entered the JAG Corps in 2002. He earned a Master of Arts in National Security and Strategic Studies from the U.S. Naval War College, where he graduated from the Naval College of Command and Staff (with highest distinction) in 2014.  He graduated from the Army War College’s Advanced Strategic Art Program in 2022 with a Master of Arts in Strategic Studies. He is also a graduate of the Armor Officer Basic and Career Courses, Airborne and Air Assault schools, and the Judge Advocate Basic and Graduate Courses.

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