Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics (USD(AT&L)) Ellen Lord today announced the appointment of Ben FitzGerald as director, Office of Strategy and Design.
In this role, effective Jan. 2, 2018, FitzGerald will serve as the central hub within the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) to lead the reorganization of AT&L.
Under section 901 of the fiscal year 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), the Department of Defense must disestablish the Office of the USD(AT&L) and establish USDs for Acquisition and Sustainment (A&S) and Research and Engineering (R&E), as well as the Chief Management Officer.
FitzGerald was appointed as a highly qualified expert (HQE) for a period of five years. HQEs “are individuals who possess uncommon, special knowledge, skills, and experience in an occupational field, and judgment that is accorded authority and status by peers or the public.”
FitzGerald has a breadth of experience across a range of strategic matters. He has served as a professional staff member for the Senate Armed Services Committee, as well as a senior fellow and director, Technology and National Security Program at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS).
Additionally, FitzGerald has led and contributed to diverse projects, such as military technology strategy, institutional innovation, UN peacekeeping doctrine, transitional law enforcement, the future of urban-littoral combat and the future role of the United States Marine Corps. Also, he designed and led a variety of wargames for military and civilian audiences, ranging from action officers to four-star generals.
His experience working across DOD, Congress and think tanks, as well as his broad perspective of Congress’ intent for the AT&L reorganization, makes him ideally suited for the position.
USD(R&E) will drive innovation and accelerate the advancement of our warfighting capability, while the USD(A&S) will deliver proven technology into the hands of the warfighter more quickly and affordably. Working from the reorganization plan previously submitted to Congress Aug. 1, 2017, FitzGerald will determine how current AT&L functions fit into the overarching objectives of the new structure and whether those functions should transition to R&E, A&S, another OSD functional lead, the Military Services or be divested altogether.
To view the DOD Report to Congress on Restructuring the Department of Defense Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Organization and Chief Management Officer Organization, click here.