Army General Benoît Puga was born on January 30, 1953, in Saint-Mandé, Val-de-Marne, France.
He entered the French military academy Ecole spéciale militaire de Saint-Cyr in September 1973 and upon graduation chose to serve in the infantry.
He served for several years in the 2nd Parachute Regiment of the Foreign Legion (Régiment Etranger de Parachutistes) and became its commanding officer from 1996 to 1998. As a member in this regiment, he served in many locations, including Kolwezi (Zaire), Gabon, Beirut, Bangui (Central African Republic), Chad, Bosnia and Congo.
After graduating from the Ecole de Guerre (War College), he commanded a class of officer cadets of the Ecole spéciale militaire de Saint-Cyr in Coëtquidan from 1989 to 1992, and served several times on the General Staff. He also served in former Yugoslavia for more than two years, in 1994-1996 and 1999.
In 1999-2000, he attended the 52nd session of IHEDN (Institut des hautes études de défense nationale: Higher institute for national defense studies) and the 49th session of CHEM (Centre des hautes études militaires).
Appointed General Officer on September 1st, 2002, he was successively Chief of the CPCO (Centre de planification et de conduite des opérations, 2002-2004), Special Operations Commander (2004-2007), Deputy Chief of the General Staff for Operations (2007-2008), and Director of Military Intelligence (2008-2010).
On March 5, 2010, he was appointed Chief of the Special Military Staff of the President of the French Republic (Chef de l’état-major particulier du président de la République) and promoted to the rank and title of Army General on March 10, 2010.
On September 1st, 2016, Army General Benoît Puga assumed the positions of Grand Chancellor of the Legion of Honor and Chancellor of the National Order of Merit.
He holds the Grand Cross of the Legion of Honor and the Grand Cross of the National Order of Merit. He has been awarded the Cross for Military Valor with eight mentions for bravery.
He graduated with an engineering degree from the Ecole spéciale militaire de Saint-Cyr, and also holds a master of advanced studies in policy and international relations as well as a master’s degree in history.