The Rt. Hon. Sir John Chilcot, GCB, PC (born 22 April 1939) is a privy council member and former civil servant. His appointment as chair of an inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the March 2003 invasion of Iraq and its aftermath was announced in June 2009.
He was educated at Brighton College and Pembroke College, Cambridge, where he read English and languages. A career civil servant until his retirement in 1997, he served as Permanent Under-Secretary of State at the Northern Ireland Office, Deputy Under-Secretary at the Home Office in charge of the Police Department, and a variety of posts in the Home Office, the Civil Service Department and the Cabinet Office, including Private Secretary appointments to Home Secretaries Roy Jenkins, Merlyn Rees, and Willie Whitelaw, and to the Head of the Civil Service, William Armstrong.
His honours include CB (1990), KCB (1994), and GCB (1998). He became a Privy Counsellor in 2004, and was a member of the Butler Review of the use of intelligence in the run-up to the invasion of Iraq in 2003. He acted as "staff counsellor" to MI5 and MI6 from 1999 to 2004, "dealing with private and personal complaints from members of the intelligence services about their work and conditions."