Mark W. Lippert is the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Asian and Pacific Security Affairs (APSA). He is the principal advisor to the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy and the Secretary of Defense on international security strategy and policy related to the nations and international organizations of Asia and the Pacific, their governments and defense establishments, and for oversight of security cooperation programs, including foreign military sales, in the region.
Prior to being confirmed in April 2012, he completed a two-year mobilization to active duty in the United States Navy. During that time, which included a deployment to Afghanistan, he served as an intelligence officer for Naval Special Operations Forces.
Mr. Lippert served as Deputy Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff for the National Security Council in 2009. In 2008, he was Deputy Director for Foreign Policy on the Obama-Biden Transition Team and Senior Foreign Policy Adviser on the Obama for America campaign.
From 2007 to 2008, Mr. Lippert served as an intelligence officer with Naval Special Operations Forces in Iraq.
Previously, he worked as foreign policy adviser for then-Senator Obama from 2005 to 2008, where he managed the senator's work on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. From 2000 to 2005, he was a professional staff member on the Senate Appropriations Committee, State-Foreign Operations Subcommittee, advising Senator Patrick Leahy on a range of foreign aid and security assistance issues. From 1999 to 2000 he was a foreign and defense policy adviser to Senator Tom Daschle and the Senate Democratic Policy Committee.
Mr. Lippert’s military awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal for his service in Iraq.
He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Stanford University with a B.A. in Political Science and holds an M.A. in International Policy Studies from the same institution. He also studied Mandarin Chinese at Beijing University.