Isabelle François is a nonresident senior fellow with the Atlantic Council’s Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security and a member of NATO’s international staff.
François joined the Council as a senior fellow in 2012 following a year as a distinguished visiting research fellow at the Center for Transatlantic Security Studies at the National Defense University. She served previously at NATO headquarters as head of Euro-Atlantic integration and partnership. From 1998 to 2011, François held various positions on the NATO International Staff, including director of the NATO Information Office in Moscow, where she spent five years from 2004 to 2009. She received the Medal of Excellence from the NATO Secretary General in 2007 for a significant public diplomacy event—the 2006 NATO-Russia Rally—organized throughout the Russian Federation from Kaliningrad to Vladivostok.
She has worked within the Alliance on a range of issues dealing with NATO partnerships and outreach policy, as well as defense planning within the Alliance. Before joining NATO, she served at the Department of National Defense in Canada (1993-1998) and in the Policy Group, both within the NATO Directorate (1996-1998) and the Directorate of Strategic Analysis (1993-1996), where she published extensively on defense issues related to Africa and Europe, before she took a more operational assignment as part of the team in charge of drafting the 1994 Canadian Defense White Paper.
François holds a law degree from Université de Paris XII (France) and is a graduate from Carleton University (MA) in Ottawa, Ontario, and Université de Montréal (PhD) in Québec, Canada.