Gary Sick is a senior research scholar at Columbia University’s Middle East Institute and an adjunct professor at the School of International and Public Affairs. He served on the National Security Council under Presidents Ford, Carter, and Reagan. He was the principal White House aide for Iran during the Iranian Revolution and the hostage crisis. Sick is a captain (ret.) in the U.S. Navy, with service in the Persian Gulf, North Africa, and the Mediterranean.
From 1982 to 1987, Sick served as deputy director for international affairs at the Ford Foundation, where he was responsible for programs relating to U.S. foreign policy. He is a member (emeritus) of the board of Human Rights Watch in New York and founding chair of its advisory committee on the Middle East and North Africa. He is the executive director of Gulf/2000, an international online research project on political, economic and security developments in the Persian Gulf, being conducted at Columbia University since 1993 with support from a number of major foundations.
Sick was voted one of the top five teachers in 2009 at the School of International and Public Affairs. He is the author of All Fall Down: America's Tragic Encounter With Iran (Random House 1985) and October Surprise: America's Hostages in Iran and the Election of Ronald Reagan (Random House 1991).