J.F. Holden-Rhodes was a serving Officer in the United States Marine Corps. A combat veteran, he saw action with 3rd Force Reconnaissance Company; and, commanded Company D, 3rd Reconnaissance Battalion, 3rd Marine Division. He also commanded the first Mobile Combined Action Company (CAC 3-3) in the Combined Action Program (CAP).
He has worked primarily in the field of Intelligence, and Intelligence Operations. His Ph.D. (U.S. Intelligence Policy) was earned at the University of New Mexico and he was a Post-Doctoral Fellow at Los Alamos National Laboratory.
Holden-Rhodes has lectured and taught at the National Drug Intelligence Center, National Security Agency, Central Intelligence Agency, Western European Union (Paris), University of New Mexico, New Mexico Highlands University, New Mexico State University, and Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. He created and served as the Director, Intelligence Studies Program, NMSU.
He was selected as the 2009 Outstanding Intelligence Studies Teacher by the International Association for Intelligence Education (IAFIE). He is the author of the award winning book, Sharing the Secrets--Open Source Intelligence and the War on Drugs.
With his wife and daughter, he lives in a very old adobe house in Placitas, New Mexico. Besides the study of history, he spends his time driving his four Jaguars.
Smart and Faithful Force: Henry Clay Cochrane and the United States Marine Corps, 1861-1905: Reflecting on his service under Cochrane, Frederic May Wise wrote: "Colonel Cochrane was a remarkable man....But he was "ornery" and meaner than hell on duty....He was a Tartar for discipline. He was product of the Civil War. To him orders were to be obeyed, work was to be done. No excuses. No explanations. No quarter to be given or ever expected....Under his command there was no passing the buck, no laziness, no indifference. In some strange way nothing could take place without his immediate knowledge....A man of no sympathy, and no affection, but efficient to an unusual degree. A magnificent barracks and mess officer. A past master in discipline. Cordially hated by men and officers alike....I learned a lot about soldiering from him."
Advance Praise for Smart and Faithful Force:
“James Holden-Rhodes has written a superb account of the life
and contributions of a truly fascinating character in the history of our nation
and Marine Corps. It is the brilliantly told and researched story of Henry Clay
Cochrane, a hero, reformer, and innovator. This expertly detailed work is a
must read for those interested in understanding the historical evolution of the
Marine Corps into the renown fighting force it has become. Holden-Rhodes
clearly captures the actions and the thinking in the era between the Civil War
and World War I when our military was transitioning to meet the challenges of a
--General Anthony C. Zinni USMC (Retired)
“Jim Holden-Rhodes rescues the history of the Marine Corps from the post-Civil War ‘dark ages’ of organizational stagnation. The career of Henry Clay Cochrane show that a few brave reformers pushed the Marine Corps to high standards of appearance, discipline, training, and marksmanship. As it entered its imperial years, 1898-1933, the Marine Corps showed that its soaring self-esteem was justified by its fighting skills. Cochrane showed the way.”
--Allan R. Millett, Author, Semper Fidelis: The History of the United States Marine Corps