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Peter Highnam

Dr. Peter Highnam

Deputy Director, DARPA of Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA)

Dr. Peter Highnam became the deputy director of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in February 2018. Before coming to DARPA, Dr. Highnam was the director of research at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA), on assignment from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), for two and a half years. Prior to that assignment, he served six years at the ODNI’s Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA), initially as an office director, and then as director. Dr. Highnam worked from 2003 until 2009 in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Initially, he served as a senior advisor in the National Institutes of Health (NIH), with responsibilities in areas where high-performance computing intersects with biomedicine and public health, including computational epidemiology. Subsequently, he served as senior advisor to the director of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA), where he produced analyses in support of public health decision-making related to chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear events, as well as naturally occurring disease. From 1999 to 2003, Dr. Highnam was a DARPA program manager working in electronic warfare and airborne communications. His research in electronic warfare (the Advanced Tactical Targeting Technology (AT3) program) focused on inexpensive approaches to rapidly and accurately target enemy air defense radars from greater standoff distances. Dr. Highnam also investigated technology for high-performance, flexible, and secure networked communication between tactical aircraft (the Tactical Targeting Networking Technologies (TTNT) program), enabling plans to move away from systems such as Link 16. Dr. Highnam worked for more than a decade in applied research at Schlumberger Limited, where he implemented industry-changing seismic data analytics on massively parallel computers. He also served as a director of a successful biomedical imaging startup company. Dr. Highnam holds a Doctorate of Philosophy in computer science from Carnegie Mellon University, a Master of Science in mathematical logic and the foundations of mathematics from the University of Bristol (United Kingdom), and a Bachelor of Science in computer science from the University of Manchester (United Kingdom). Dr. Highnam has received the Department of Health and Human Services Secretary’s Distinguished Service Award, the Office of the Secretary of Defense Medal for Exceptional Public Service, and the NGA Distinguished Civilian Service Award. He is a co-inventor on three patents related to commercial seismic exploration.


Mary Miller

Mary Miller (Pending Confirmation)

Principal Deputy Director for Research and Technology of U.S. Department of Defense (DOD)

Ms. Mary J. Miller was selected as the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering. In this role she provides Science and Technology leadership throughout the Department of Defense; shaping strategic direction and strengthening the research and engineering coordination efforts to meet tomorrow's challenges through research, development and engineering laboratories and centers, academia, industrial and international partners and allies. Prior to this position, Ms. Miller served three years as the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Research and Technology. As DASA(R&T), she was responsible for policy and oversight of the Army’s research and technology program, which spans 16 Laboratories and Research, Development and Engineering Centers, employs nearly 12,000 scientists and engineers and has a yearly budget that exceeds $2.4 billion. Ms. Miller was charged with identifying, developing and demonstrating technology options that inform and enable effective and affordable capabilities for the Soldier. She was also responsible for developing a science and technology (S&T) strategy that is responsive to Army needs from the near term (5 years) stretching out through the far term (more than 20 years). Her S&T portfolio covered basic research through the development and demonstration of components, subsystems, manufacturing technology, and technology system prototypes. Between 2010-2013, Ms. Miller served over 2 years as the Deputy Program Executive Officer, Soldier, where she was the principal Department of the Army civilian responsible for the design, development, procurement, fielding and sustainment of a portfolio with more than 460 products/systems and a $3 billion budget. Her work encompassed virtually everything the Soldier wears or carries. Between 2005-2010, Ms. Miller served as the Director for Technology, within the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology (ASA(ALT)). There she was responsible for the oversight and coordination of the Army’s S&T efforts to transition technology in support of Army acquisition programs. She managed the Army’s development efforts at the component, sub-system and system level to include the Manufacturing Technology programs executed by the Army S&T Enterprise. She also served as the U.S. Representative on the Weapons Panel of The Technology Cooperation Program (TTCP). Ms. Miller received a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Washington, an M.S. in Electrical Engineering, Electro-Physics, from George Washington University and an M.B.A. from the University of Tennessee. She is the recipient of an Army Research and Development Achievement Award for her technical achievement in the “Development of Nonlinear Materials for Sensor Protection.” Ms. Miller was selected in 2005 to the Senior Executive Service and is Defense Acquisition Workforce Level III certified in Program Management; Engineering; and Science and Technology.


Marie Sandrock

Dr. Marie Sandrock

Deputy Director, Strategic Capabilities Office of U.S. Department of Defense (DOD)