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Webinar: The Evolution of U.S. Nuclear Policy: Continuity and Change

Thu, Sep 23, 2021, 5:00pm - 6:00pm

You are cordially invited to a webinar presentation on the topic:
The Evolution of U.S. Nuclear Policy: Continuity and Change
The Honorable David J. Trachtenberg

Thursday, September 23rd, 2021
5:00 PM – 6:00 PM ET

**This event will also be streamed live on Facebook.**



About the lecture: This lecture will review the nuclear weapons policies established by various administrations of both parties, focusing on the areas of bipartisan continuity and possible upcoming changes being considered by the current administration.

About the speaker: The Honorable David J. Trachtenberg is Vice President of the National Institute for Public Policy, a nonprofit research center located in Fairfax, Virginia. He was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on October 17, 2017 as Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Policy and served in this capacity until his retirement from government service in July 2019. From October 2017 until January 2018, he also served as the Acting Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, the principal civilian advisor to the Secretary of Defense on defense policy matters. His duties spanned a range of regional and functional portfolios, including homeland defense, space, cyber, nuclear, and missile defense policy, technology security policy, and strengthening security cooperation activities with allies, friends, and partners abroad. He was also the senior Department of Defense civilian official responsible for developing, coordinating, and overseeing compliance with DoD policy regarding civilian casualties resulting from military operations.

Prior to his confirmation, Mr. Trachtenberg was an independent consultant on national security issues. From July 2008 to October 2017 he was President and Chief Executive Officer of Shortwaver Consulting, LLC. He has more than 40 years of experience in the national security policy field and has worked at senior levels in the Executive and Legislative branches of government. During his tenure at the Pentagon over two administrations, he served under five confirmed or acting Secretaries of Defense.

From October 2005 to September 2007, he was Vice President and head of the Strategic Analysis Division at CACI-National Security Research, providing strategic advice and oversight of CACINSR’s support to private sector customers. Prior to NSR’s merger with CACI in October 2005, he was Senior Vice President for Homeland Security at National Security Research, Inc. From August 2003 to March 2005, he served as NSR’s Senior Vice President for Corporate Support.

Prior to joining NSR, Mr. Trachtenberg was Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy with responsibility for issues relating to NATO, Europe, Russia, and Eurasia, technology security, counterproliferation, missile defense, nuclear forces, and arms control. From October 2001 to April 2002, and again from May to July 2003, he also served as the acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Forces Policy, heading the office responsible for the 2001 Nuclear Posture Review. He also represented the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy at meetings of the Nuclear Weapons Council. He headed numerous interagency delegations abroad in support of the President’s direction to the Secretary of Defense to encourage international cooperation on missile defense, leading discussions with Russia on this topic. He was appointed to his OSD position as a member of the Senior Executive Service by Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld in October 2001. He is also a two-time recipient of the Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Public Service, the highest honorary award presented by DoD to private citizens.

From 1995-2001, Mr. Trachtenberg was a Professional Staff Member with the House Committee on Armed Services (HASC) in Washington, D.C. As head of the Committee’s policy staff, he was responsible for numerous defense policy issues, including ballistic missile defense, arms control, the “Nunn-Lugar” Cooperative Threat Reduction program, counter-terrorism, Bosnia and Kosovo, Iraq, and the United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM), technology transfer, China, export controls, and proliferation. In addition, he was the staff lead for the HASC Special Oversight Panel on Terrorism. He co-authored the HASC investigative report on the June 1996 terrorist bombing of Khobar Towers in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, and was the lead investigator and author of the HASC staff report on the U.S.S. Cole attack. He also helped draft the legislation creating the independent Commission to Assess the Ballistic Missile Threat to the United States (a.k.a. the “Rumsfeld Commission”).

Formerly, Mr. Trachtenberg was National Security Senior Analyst and Member of the Technical Staff at The Analytic Sciences Corporation (TASC) in Arlington, VA, where he provided analytic and research support to the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization and executive support to the Chairman of the BMD Advisory Committee – the senior independent DoD advisory group on all matters relating to ballistic missile defense acquisition, system development, and technology. At TASC, he established the TASC Arms Control and Proliferation Analysis Center and worked on counterproliferation issues for the Air Force and the Defense Airborne Reconnaissance Office.

Prior to joining TASC, Mr. Trachtenberg was Senior Defense Analyst of the Committee on the Present Danger in Washington, D.C. He was a consultant to the President’s General Advisory Committee on Arms Control and Disarmament and was a Research Associate with the Institute for Foreign Policy Analysis, Inc. He holds an A.B. in International Relations from the University of Southern California and an M.S. degree in Foreign Service from Georgetown University, knows Russian and French, and is a member of several national honor societies and defense-related professional organizations.

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