Adam J. Tiffen

Adam J. Tiffen (born 1975) is an American writer, attorney, and military officer.  He is a veteran of three combat tours participating in both Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom. Tiffen is a Defense Council Member of the Truman National Security Project.


Tiffen attended Philadelphia University, earning a Bachelor's Degree there in 1998, and his Juris Doctor from The George Washington University Law School in 2003.  He is also a graduate of the U.S. Army's Maneuver Captains Career Course, the U.S. Army's Command and General Staff College, and the Advanced Operations Course.


Tiffen began his legal career as a legal assistant at Skadden Arps.  After graduation he practiced law as an associate at Porter, Wright, Morris & Arthur in Washington D.C.  He specialized in International Trade Law and Securities Litigation.  He also worked on Export Control and Customs Trade Partnership against Terrorism issues, and appeared before the USTR and the ITC representing foreign manufacturers in anti-dumping cases.  He was a member of the defense team in U.S. v. Roger D. Blackwell, and U.S. v. George David Gordon.  He is admitted to the Bar in Washington D.C., and the State of Florida.


​Tiffen graduated from the Georgetown University Hoya Battalion ROTC Program and was commissioned as an Infantry officer in 2003. Following successful completion of Airborne School and the Infantry Officer Basic Course, Tiffen participated in Operation North Wind with soldiers from the 11th Division, Japan Ground Self-Defense Force in Hokkaido, Japan.  

​From January 2005 to May 2006, Tiffen took a leave of absence from his law firm after being called to active duty as a member of the Maryland Army National Guard.    He served as an Infantry Platoon Leader with Bravo Co., 1-115th Infantry Regiment, which was attached to the 1-118th Field Artillery, 48th Brigade Combat Team, Georgia Army National Guard.  He was promoted to 1st Lieutenant at Camp Beuring, Kuwait.  During thisdeployment, Tiffen’s Platoon was stationed at Camp Taji, Iraq and Al Asad Airbase, Iraq, and conducted combat operations around the Iraqi town of Sabe al Boor, and in Al Anbar Province.  

​In 2007 Tiffen deployed to Iraq as the Adjutant of the 1-158th Cavalry Squadron, and served at Camp Cropper, Iraq.  During this deployment, he was promoted to Captain at Al-Faw Palace.  Upon his return, Tiffen assumed command of C Troop (LRS), 1-158th Cavalry Squadron.  As Commander, he led his company in Operation Talisman Sabre 2011 and in Leapfest, an international static line parachute competition.  He also visited Sajarevo, Bosnia and instructed Officers of the Bosnian Armed Forces as part of the Maryland–Bosnia and Herzegovina National Guard Partnership.

​In 2011, Tiffen was deployed to Afghanistan as the Aide-de-camp to then BG Charles W. Whittington, Jr., deputy commander of the 29th Infantry Division.  He was stationed at NKAIA, where he worked on Afghan Security Forces Growth and Development with the International Security Assistance Force.  During this deployment he traveled extensively throughout Afghanistan, working closely with NATO partners, as well as Afghan leaders from the Ministry of the Interior and Ministry of Defense. Tiffen was promoted to Major in 2013.  

Subsequently, he has served as the (S-3) Operations Officer and the Executive Officer of the Maryland Army National Guard's 1st Battalion, 175th Infantry Regiment. He is presently the member of the Maryland National Guard Joint Staff.

He has been awarded the Airborne Badge and the Combat Infantry Badge. Tiffen's awards and decorations also include the Bronze Star Medal (two awards), the Joint Meritorious Service Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Army Commendation Medal (two awards), the Army Achievement Medal (three awards), the Army Reserve Component Achievement Medal (four awards) and the Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal.

Frontier and Emerging Markets 

In 2010, Tiffen joined with two partners to start Tri-Star Collaborative, a firm working on sustainable development and capacity building in post-conflict environments.  In 2011, Tri-Star Collaborative opened its first office in Monrovia, Liberia. He frequently consults on development and capacity building projects in West and North Africa.  In 2013, he joined Perim Associates as a part-time adviser on development issues and risk mitigation in the MENA region.

In 2014, Tiffen joined Gryphon Partners as Senior Director. Gryphon Partners is a global advisory firm focused on frontier markets. Founded by Dr. Zalmay Khalilzad, former U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan, Iraq, and the United Nations, Gryphon Partners advises companies and high net worth individuals on business opportunities across multiple industries and regions. 

Non-Profit Work

Tiffen also serves as the Deputy Director and is on the Board of Directors of the 501(c) Alliance for the Restoration of Cultural Heritage (ARCH). ARCH works to preserve and protect culturally significant heritage from destruction due to conflict and development and has projects in several countries, including Afghanistan, Iraq, and Greece.