2020 Defense Services Conference Speakers

  Ellen M. Lord
Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment
Senate Confirmed in August 2017, the Honorable Ellen M. Lord currently serves as the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment (A&S). In this capacity, she is responsible to the Secretary of Defense for all matters pertaining to acquisition; developmental testing; contract administration; logistics and materiel readiness; installations and environment; operational energy; chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons; the acquisition workforce; and the defense industrial base. Read more. 
  Rear Admiral John Polowczyk
Department of Defense
Polowczyk assumed the position of vice director for logistics, logistics directorate (J4), Joint Staff in June 2017. The J4 is responsible for integrating logistics planning and execution in support of joint operations to drive joint force readiness, maximize the Joint Force Commander's freedom of action and advise the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff on logistics matters. Read more.
William P. Bray
Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Development, Test and Evaluation)
Bray serves as the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development,Test and Evaluation (DASN (RDT&E)) under the Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition (ASN (RD&A)). Bray is responsible for executive oversight of all matters related to RDT&E Budget Activities, Science and Engineering, Advanced Research and Development, Prototyping and Experimentation, and Test and Evaluation. He is also responsible for oversight and stewardship of the Department of Navy Research and Development Establishment including naval laboratories, warfare centers and systems centers. Read more.
Kristin K. French
Chief of Staff, Defense Logistics Agency
As Chief of Staff, French is charged with leading all headquarters operations and directly supporting six Major Subordinate Commands’ actions in the areas of strategic planning, enterprise integration, organizational governance, strategic communications, legislative affairs, small business programs, protocol, equal opportunity and installation management. Ms. French is directly responsible for over 2,000 personnel and $335 million in contracts that support eleven major DLA installations worldwide, to include 27 distribution depots, 100 disposition facilities and 642 defense fuel support points. Read more.
Andrew Hunter
Director of the Defense-Industrial Initiatives Group, CSIS
Hunter is director of the Defense-Industrial Initiatives Group at CSIS. He focuses on issues affecting the industrial base, including emerging technologies, sequestration, acquisition policy, and industrial policy. From 2011 to November 2014, Mr. Hunter served as a senior executive in the Department of Defense (DOD). Appointed as director of the Joint Rapid Acquisition Cell in 2013, his duties included fielding solutions to urgent operational needs and leading the work of the Warfighter Senior Integration Group to ensure timely action on critical issues of warfighter support. Read more.
  Jeffrey S. White
Principal Deputy, Assistant Secretary of the Army, (Acquisition, Logistics, and Technology)
Mr. Jeffrey S. White currently serves as the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army (Acquisition, Logistics & Technology). As the Principal Deputy, he advises the Assistant Secretary and Army leadership on all matters relating to Army acquisition, procurement, research & development and logistics. He participates in the development of policies, programs and processes for the execution of the Army’s acquisition efforts. Read more.
William S. Williford III
Executive Director, Marine Corps Systems Command
Williford was named Executive Director, Marine Corps Systems Command, in December 2016. In this position, he serves as the senior civilian official responsible for leading and directing daily business operations for the Command to equip and sustain Marine Forces with the most capable and cost effective full-spectrum ground weapon and information technology systems for current and future expeditionary and crisis-response operations. Marine Corps Systems Command is a team of 2500 acquisition professionals executing annually $9 billion of Marine Corps appropriations putting great capability in the hands of Marines. Read more.
  Neil Albert
President and CEO, NFA Consulting
Albert provides advice and support to the US government and industry service partners. With over 40 years of experience he has worked, managed and led multiple government related industry service support organizations in the areas of strategic planning, program management, cost/schedule/technical analysis, project performance measurement, acquisition management, and risk assessment. Read more.
  Maria Proestou
Executive Vice President for Government and Customer Relations, VTG
Maria Proestou is VTG’s Executive Vice President of Government and Customer Relations. At VTG, she is responsible for applying engineering services across the enterprise and developing strategies to meet the government’s most pressing mission priorities. Most recently, Maria lent her expertise to the development of cybersecurity engineering requirements for complex warfighting systems across DoD. Maria was named to this position following the integration of her company, DELTA Resources, Inc. with VTG. Maria guided DELTA’s growth and development over the course of 20 years, effectively transitioning the firm from a woman-owned small business to a large business specializing in engineering services for the DoD’s largest acquisition command. Read more. 
  Kristen J. Baldwin
Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Science, Technology and Engineering, Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force (Acquisition, Technology and Logistics)
Kristen J. Baldwin, a member of the Senior Executive Service, is Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Science, Technology and Engineering, Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force (Acquisition, Technology and Logistics), the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.  Ms. Baldwin provides guidance, advocacy, and policy for the Air Force's annual $2.6 billion science and technology program and $1 billion developmental prototyping and experimentation program, conducted at 40 research sites worldwide. She provides engineering and technical management direction on digital engineering, cyber resilient weapons, corrosion control, capability development planning, and the functional management of more than 14,000 military and civilian scientists and engineers. Read more.