Michael Young retired as a Foreign Service Officer with the U.S. Department of State in 2019. His most recent tour was as the Foreign Policy Advisor to the Commander of Special Operations Command North in Colorado Springs, with a focus on Arctic security. He earlier served as the Arctic Affairs Officer in the Office of Oceans and Polar Affairs, where he worked for the U.S. Senior Arctic Official. In this role he also served as the U.S. Head of Delegation for the Sustainable Development Working Group on the Arctic Council. He was one of the key architects of the Arctic Council program during the U.S. Chairmanship from 2015-17. Other assignments as a Foreign Service Officer included tours in Kabul, Mexico City, and Toronto.
Before joining the Foreign Service, Mike was an officer in the U.S. Navy for 15 years, where he served as a naval nuclear engineer and surface warfare officer. Shipboard tours included Assistant Chief Engineer on the USS TRUXTUN (CGN-35) and Operations Officer on the USS CHANDLER (DDG-996). He also did a two-year exchange tour as an instructor at the Australian Defence Force Academy and served at U.S. Northern Command as a Watch Section Chief in the Domestic Warning Center.
A native of Golden, Colorado, Michael graduated from the Colorado School of Mines with a BSc in Engineering Physics and an MBA from the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Between careers with the Navy and the State Department, he founded and managed an adventure travel company, leading groups on trips up Mounts Kenya and Kilimanjaro, running a kayaking school in Colorado and selling worldwide rafting trips. He is an avid cross-country skier, cyclist, and trail runner.