Louis Beam (born 1946) is a Texan white nationalist. After high-school he served as a helicopter door-gunner in Vietnam. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. Back in the U.S. he became a Klansman, leading a maritime Louisiana KKK element against government help to Vietnamese immigrant fishermen. He became active with Aryan Nations in the early 1980s. He is considered to be the first important proponent of the strategy of leaderless resistance. In recent years, Beam has maintained a significantly lower profile.
According to ADL/LEARN, he has been fighting against a government he views as "tyrannical and controlled by Jewish conspirators" for more than thirty years. He first became engaged on the far right as a paramilitary Klansman, later with ties to Christian Identity groups. In both roles he was one of the most influential figures on the far right. He cites Thomas Jefferson in resistance to tyranny. Beam refused Aryan Nation's head Richard Girnt Butler offer of leadership of the religious group in 1988 and chose to continue to work alone. During the past ten years he has limited his activity to his web site. His essay Leaderless Resistance has been translated into seven languages.