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Mr. Cihangir Aksit
NATO

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Director, NATO Standardization Agency
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Major General (ret.) Cihangir Aksit was born in Istanbul, Turkey 1953.

He graduated from the Army Staff College, Istanbul in 1984. Between 1984 and 1994, he was assigned to various Staff and Infantry Command positions in the Turkish Army and within NATO (HQ COMLANDSOUTHEAST (Izmir) and AFSOUTH (Naples)). In 1987, he attended Course 70 of the NATO Defense College, Rome. In 1994 Aksit was assigned to the HQ Turkish General Staff (TGS), to serve as the Head of the Management Section.

He played a major role in the initiation and establishment of Total Quality Management (TQM), the renewing of the personnel performance & evaluation system and establishing new educational-social systems for the military. In 1997, Aksit was assigned as Commander of the Presidential Guard Regiment, Ankara for a two-year period. During this time, he applied change management and TQM to his regiment, acquiring the first ISO 9000 certificate in the Turkish Armed Forces. He has given conferences and lectures on modern management, strategic planning and TQM in universities and extended and deepened the cooperation with other civilian actors in this domain.

He was promoted Brigadier General and assigned to command a Mechanized Infantry Brigade, at the eastern border in 1999. Just a few days before 9/11 in 2001 Aksit returned to NATO as Chief of the Plans & Ops Branch, SHAPE (Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe), Mons, also for two years. In 2003 Aksit was promoted to Major General and assigned as the Chief of Training & Exercise Division in the Turkish General Staff, Ankara, playing a key role in major projects such as the establishment of strategic planning in the TUR Armed Forces, and the NATO Defense Against Terrorism Center of Excellence (Ankara). He and his team also managed the Turkish Partnership for Peace Training Center and initiated the CO-War Academies projects for Albania(Tirana) and Afghanistan(Kabul).

After a tour as Commander of an Infantry Division, 2005-2007, Aksit was assigned the Deputy Inspector General of the Turkish Land Forces Command on operational and material standards and procedures. He retired in 2008. After his retirement, Aksit was assigned to President’s Defense Consultant in 2010 and then to the Consultant Expert at the permanent Mission of Turkey to NATO in Brussels. He took the role of Director NSA on 1 July 2010, focusing on agency reform. In parallel, he is at the final thesis phase of the PhD programme on International Security Strategies in Strategic Research Institute (SAREN) in Istanbul. He has published three historical novels and his other hobbies are oil painting, chess, horseback riding and skiing.

Cihangir Aksit is married and has two children.

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