Terence Emmert is performing the duties of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering where he serves as the Department’s Chief Technology Officer and is responsible for the research, development, and prototyping activities across the DoD enterprise, and is mandated with ensuring technological superiority for the Department of Defense. He oversees the activities of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, the Missile Defense Agency, the Defense Innovation Unit, the Space Development Agency, the DoD Laboratory enterprise, and the Under Secretariat staff focused on developing advanced technology and capability for the U.S. military.
He also serves as the acting Director of Defense Research and Engineering for Advanced Capabilities, where he directs an organization whose mission is to recognize, explore, and accelerate the development and integration of new technology to maintain U.S. technological superiority. He is responsible for establishing a Department of Defense joint mission engineering capability, oversight of developmental testing and test facilities as well as demonstration and validation of technology prototype and rapid fielding activities. He also provides independent technical risk assessments of major acquisition programs.
Mr. Emmert was designated as Principal Deputy, Director of Defense Research and Engineering for Advanced Capabilities (PD, DDRE (AC)) in October 2018 and with the DDRE (AC) directs an organization whose mission is to recognize, explore, and accelerate the development and integration of new technology to maintain U.S. technological superiority. His responsibilities include establishing a Department of Defense joint mission engineering capability, overseeing developmental testing, and executing experimentation and prototyping initiatives. He is focused on driving down technical risk, gaining warfighter feedback to better inform requirements, and ensuring that concepts transitioning into acquisition provide needed capability and are timely and affordable.
Mr. Emmert previously held the position of Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (Materiel Readiness). In this role, he was the principal advisor to the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) leadership on policies, procedures, and actions related to the materiel readiness of weapons and other materiel systems. He was responsible for the development and implementation of acquisition and sustainment strategies, policies, and processes that provide the Warfighter with cost-effective weapon system readiness across the life cycle, through an integrated defense industrial base.
Mr. Emmert's thirty plus years of public and private service began as a Naval Aviator where he served aboard a variety of combatant ships. During this time, he was introduced to the acquisition process while serving in the Navy's operational test agency. Following his military service, he entered the private sector and sought out positions that focused on improving manufacturing and supply chain operations.
In August, 2009, Mr. Emmert rejoined the government as a Process Improvement Specialist with the Deputy Chief Management Office. In this capacity, he led series of logistics and maintenance process improvement projects for the Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle fielding in Iraq and Afghanistan. Following this assignment, he became the Policy Team Lead, Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (Materiel Readiness) where he revamped regulations governing sustainment planning for all newly developed weapons platforms.
Mr. Emmert is a 1988 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and holds advanced degrees in Aerospace Engineering, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Business Administration, and National Resource Strategy.