A former Brigadier General with the French Gendarmerie, Xavier Denis gained a comprehensive experience in law enforcement, security and crisis management throughout his various positions both in national administration and in international institutions.
During the course of his career, Xavier Denis has led operational units on the ground in France and its overseas territories and has headed several headquarters services, e.g. in human resources and operations He also fulfilled a number of positions in international entities for example with the UN, as an observer with the Minurso in Western Sahara during 1992, with the Office of the High Representative (2002-2004) in Bosnia-Herzegovina as an adviser for fighting crime and corruption and with the French Delegation to the OSCE (2004-2007) being in charge of the non-military security issues portfolio. In this capacity, he was temporarily seconded to the OSCE Police Unit in 2006 to head a special mission to Georgia, in the perspective of providing relevant authorities with a vision and plans with regard to further reforms of the Georgian Police.
From 2013, first as a seconded national expert then a temporary agent with the European External Action Service (EEAS) in Brussels, he has been involved in operational and politico-strategic planning of CSDP missions, especially those deployed in Kosovo, Ukraine and Armenia. In addition, since December 2019, he fulfils the position of coordinator for EU stabilisation actions.
In parallel to his operational and planning duties, Xavier Denis had a substantial involvement in teaching. From 2010 to 2013, he was the Head of the Research Department of the French National Institute for Advanced Security and Justice Studies (INHSJ), while a part time lecturer at the Pantheon-Assas University (Paris) for “Global Security” matters. From 2001 to 2004, he attended the international team who designed and delivered the first CEPOL training sessions on planning EU police missions.
Xavier Denis graduated from the French Military Academy of Saint-Cyr, the French War College and from Rennes University (History).