Dr. Amy Searight is Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for South and Southeast Asia within the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Asian and Pacific Security Affairs. Dr. Searight serves as the principal advisor to senior leadership within the Department of Defense for all policy matters pertaining to development and implementation of defense strategies and plans for the region. Her area of responsibility includes bilateral security relations with India and all other South Asian countries, excepting Afghanistan and Pakistan; and with the nations of Southeast Asia, plus Australia, Timor Leste, New Zealand, and the Pacific Island States.
She joined the Office of the Secretary of Defense in October 2012 as the Principal Director for East Asia, and prior to that served as Senior Policy Advisor for Asia at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Dr. Searight was assistant professor at the Elliott School of International Affairs at George Washington University and adjunct fellow at the Japan Chair at CSIS, where her research and teaching focused on Asian regional architecture, Japanese politics, and U.S. foreign policy. As a Council on Foreign Relations International Affairs Fellow in 2003-2004, Dr. Searight served in the U.S. Department of State on the Policy Planning Staff, where she helped formulate U.S. regional policy toward Asia, and was special adviser to the U.S. Ambassador for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum. She has also been a faculty member at Northwestern University, a research fellow at Harvard University, and a vice president at Stonebridge International, a strategic advising firm.
Dr. Searight received her PhD in political science from Stanford University.