Chris Gibson grew up in Columbia County in the town of Kinderhook. He was the Point Guard and Co-Captain of Ichabod CraneÃ¯Â¿Â½s High School Basketball Team and went on to graduate magna cum laude with a BA in History from Siena College while earning a ROTC Commission there.
Over the course of his 24 year Army career Chris rose to the rank of Colonel and deployed 7 times; including 4 combat tours to Iraq, and separate deployments to Kosovo, the Southwestern US for a counter-drug operation, and most recently (just prior to his retirement) to Haiti where he commanded the 82nd Airborne DivisionÃ¯Â¿Â½s 2nd Brigade Combat Team during the opening month of that humanitarian relief operation.
Other key assignments included tours teaching American Politics at the United States Military Academy at West Point, serving as a Congressional Fellow with US Representative Jerry Lewis (R-CA), the Chairman of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, and completing a Hoover National Security Affairs Fellowship at Stanford University.
Among his military decorations are 2 Legions of Merit, 4 Bronze Star Medals, the Purple Heart, the Combat InfantrymanÃ¯Â¿Â½s Badge with Star, the Master Parachutist Badge and the Ranger Tab. For their actions in Mosul in support of the first national election in the new Iraq, his Battalion Task Force earned the Valorous Unit Award. For their actions in Tal Afar during the 2nd and 3rd national elections in Iraq his Battalion and the 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment were recognized for excellence by President George W. Bush and earned a 2nd Valorous Unit Award.
Chris holds an MPA and PhD in Government from Cornell University and is the author of Securing the State, a book on national security decision-making published in 2008. Chris has been married to Mary Jo, a NYS Licensed Clinical Social Worker, for over 13 years and they have three children: Katie (12), Maggie (10) and Connor(8). Their home is in Kinderhook where Chris is active in several civic organizations including the American Legion, VFW, NRA, the Knights of Columbus and St. JohnÃ¯Â¿Â½s Church of Valatie.