Michael O. Lacey
Deputy General Counsel
(Operations and Personnel)
Office of the General Counsel
Headquarters, Department of the Army
Washington, D.C.
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image of Michael O. Lacey

Michael O. Lacey was selected into the Senior Executive Service on October 29, 2018, and began service as the Deputy General Counsel (Operations & Personnel) in the Office of the General Counsel. Mr. Lacey is responsible for a diverse legal portfolio, leading senior attorneys working in specialized areas of law, including: military operations & personnel, civilian personnel & labor law, international law, criminal law, litigation, intelligence law, information law, and administrative law. Mr. Lacey provides expert legal advice to the Secretary of the Army, the General Counsel of the Army, and other Senior Officials in the formulation, interpretation, and implementation of Army policies, procedures, and programs in the operations and personnel arena. He also provides oversight of sensitive criminal, intelligence, administrative, senior official investigations, and matters involving the Freedom of Information and Privacy Acts.


  • July 2017 - September 2018: Special Counsel to the Army General Counsel
  • January 2017 - June 2017: International Law Attorney, Military Commissions, Office of the Chief Prosecutor
  • July 2015 - August 2016: Staff Judge Advocate, First Army, Rock Island Arsenal
  • July 2013 - July 2015: Staff Judge Advocate, XVIII Airborne Corps and Fort Bragg
  • January 2014 - December 2014: LEGAD, ISAF Joint Command, Kabul, Afghanistan
  • July 2012 - July 2013: Fellow, Office of the Director of National Intelligence
  • July 2009 - July 2012: Staff Judge Advocate, 10th Mountain Division and Fort Drum
  • October 2010 - October 2011: LEGAD, Regional Command South, Kandahar Afghanistan
  • July 2008 - June 2009: Chair, International and Operational Law Department, U.S. Army JAG School
  • July 2006 - July 2008: Director, Center for Law and Military Operations
  • July 2005 - July 2006: Chief, Intelligence Law Branch, Office of the Judge Advocate General
  • July 2003 - July 2005: Deputy Staff Judge Advocate, 1st Infantry Division, Wuerzburg, Germany & Tikrit, Iraq
  • June 1999 - July 2002: Professor, International and Operational Law Department, U.S. Army JAG School
  • July 1994 - July 1998: Ch, Admin Law, Sr Trial Counsel, Op Law Atty, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg
  • February 1988 - June 1991: Infantry Officer, 25th Infantry Division, Schofield Barracks, Hawaii


  • War College Fellowship with duty at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence
  • L.L.M., U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center and School
  • J.D., University of Illinois School of Law, cum laude
  • B.S., United States Military Academy, European History


  • Purple Heart
  • Bronze Star (1OLC)
  • Legion of Merit (1 OLC)
  • Expert Infantry Badge
  • Senior Parachutist Badge
  • Air Assault badge
  • Ranger Tab
  • Combat Action Badge
  • Iraq Campaign Medal
  • Afghanistan Campaign Medal


  • Member of the Bar of the State of Illinois
  • Purple Heart Society
  • Veterans of Foreign Wars – Olney, Illinois Chapter
  • Senior Fellow, Lieber Institute, United States Military Academy


  • Lane Training in Haiti, Jan-Apr., Infantry Magazine 1998
  • Editor, The Operational Law Handbook, 1999 and 2000 editions
  • Self Defense or Self-Denial; the Proliferation of Weapons of Mass Destruction, Indiana International and Comparative Law Review, Volume 10 issue 2 (2000)
  • Passage of the Amended Protocol II, ARMY LAWYER, March 2000
  • Military Commissions; A Historical Survey, ARMY LAWYER, March 2002
  • Utilitarians versus the Humanitarians, the Battle over the Law of War, PARAMETERS, Summer 2002
  • Manstein – Military Mastermind or Mass Murderer?, WORLD WAR II Magazine, November 2005
  • Cluster Munitions: Wonder Weapon or Humanitarian Horror, ARMY LAWYER, May 2009
  • Digital Dresden?, CYBER DEFENSE Magazine, February 2013
  • Excellence in the Practice of Law – Judge Advocates serving in Afghanistan, THE BENCHER Magazine, July/August 2014
  • How We Lose the Next War, Journal of International Security and Strategic Studies, Center for National Security Studies; Volume VI issue I Spring 2022.