Dr. Reginald Brothers Director, Research
Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Research (ASD (R&E))
Dr. Reginald Brothers joined the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering as the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Research on December 6, 2011. Dr. Brothers is responsible for policy and oversight of Department of Defense (DoD) Science and Technology (S&T) programs from Basic Research through Advanced Technology Development. He is also responsible for oversight of DoD laboratories, ensuring the long-term strategic direction of the Department’s S&T programs, and for developing those technologies needed for continued technological superiority of U.S. forces.
Before assuming this position, Dr. Brothers was a BAE Systems Technical Fellow in the areas of Communication, Sensor and Optical Systems. He was the Director of Mission Applications for the Communications and Networking Business Area, where he led a team developed to determine critical warfighter capability gaps, architect technical solutions and determine strategic alignment and business rationale for new opportunities.
Dr. Brothers also served on several committees of the National Academies of Science, including the Board on Army Science and Technology.
Dr. Brothers was a Program Manager in the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Strategic Technology Office (STO). While at DARPA, he led efforts in Wireless Communications, RADAR and LADAR systems and precision navigation and targeting.
Prior to his work at DARPA, he was the Group Leader of the Distributed Information Networks Group at the Charles Stark Draper Laboratory, Chief Architect at Envoy Networks (a successful 3G wireless start-up company), and an assistant Group Leader at Lincoln Laboratory where he specialized in the areas of RF and Optical communications.
Dr. Brothers received a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Tufts University, an M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Southern Methodist University and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Dr. Robin Staffin Director, Basic Research
Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (ASD (R&E))
Dr. Robin Staffin is currently the Director for Basic Research in the Office of Assistant
Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering, where he has responsibility for oversight
of all basic research activities throughout the Department of Defense. Previously, Dr. Staffin
served as Associate Director of Science and Director for High Energy Physics at the Department
of Energy's Office of Science, and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Research and Development in
DOE's Office of Defense Programs.
During the period 1998-2001, he served as Senior Policy Advisor to the Secretary of Energy
for Science, Technology, and National Security.
From 1993-1996, Dr. Staffin was Special Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Defense
for International Security Policy, focusing on nuclear test ban policy, science-based stockpile
stewardship, and nonproliferation. A physicist by training, he received his Bachelor of Science
from MIT and Ph.D. from Stanford University in particle physics.
Dr. Laura Stubbs Director for Enterprise Services (ES)
Dr. Laura Stubbs was appointed to the Office of the Secretary of Defense as the Director for Enterprise Services (ES) reporting to the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, effective July, 2010. ES is responsible for strategic planning, internal communications, performance and information management, legal policy, and oversight of congressionally mandated programs affecting the readiness and wellbeing of the U.S. armed forces.
Before assuming her current role, Dr. Stubbs was the Chief Learning Officer for the Carderock Division at the Naval Surface Warfare Center where she provided the overarching strategy for technical learning and workforce development initiatives for 3200 employees. Prior to that position, she was the Branch Head for the Machinery Science and Technology Group where she led a team of engineers and scientists to develop cutting edge upstream technologies for the Navy.
With a proven track record of success, from 2006-2009, Dr. Stubbs was recalled to active duty by the Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Manpower and Reserve Affairs as a Human Capital and Lean Six Sigma Deployment Champion. She developed, implemented and promoted the use of process improvement practices to better implement the Department of Navy human capital strategy and total force planning management policies.
No stranger to private industry, Dr. Stubbs previously worked at Procter and Gamble where she held key leadership positions. She organized and implemented one of the most complicated logistics, customs, importing and exporting programs leading teams in the delivery of key global materials and in the successful launch of a new, global product simultaneously on four continents.
Dr. Stubbs earned her Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Maryland at College Park. She holds both her B.S.E. and M.S.E. degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics from the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Stubbs entered the U.S. Navy as the first African-American Naval Nuclear Power School instructor and later transferred to the US Naval Academy as an Assistant Professor in the Mechanical Engineering Department.
Her awards and decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal, the DoD Science Technology Engineering Mathematics (STEM) Role Model Award and the VADM Samuel Gravely Award for achievement in equity and diversity. Throughout her careers, ever cognizant of her responsibility as a role model, she has dedicated her life to assisting others in achieving their dreams. Her most recent award from the University of Pennsylvania’s Black Alumni Society, honored her for that lifelong dedication in which she received the Living Legend Award recognizing outstanding achievement and significant contributions to the University of Pennsylvania and to the Community.
An active member of her communities, Dr. Stubbs is a member of a variety of professional organizations including: Lifetime Member of the Navy League, Reserve Officers Association, National Naval Officers Association, American Society of Quality, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, American Society of Naval Engineers, African American Federal Executives Association, Military Officers Association of America, and Women’s Memorial at Arlington Cemetery.
Dr. John Fischer Director, Defense Laboratories Enterprise
Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (ASD (R&E))
Dr. John Fischer earned a bachelor's degree (cum laude) in Chemistry from Lawrence University
in 1978, his doctorate in Organic Chemistry from Northern Illinois University in 1982, and served as a
post-doctoral research chemist at the Ohio State University from 1982 to 1984. He began his career with
the Navy in 1984 as a research chemist in the Research Department of the former Naval Weapons Center
at China Lake, California. His interests were in the development of new explosives, propellants, and
nonlinear optical materials.
Dr. Fischer assumed the position of branch head in the Soldering Technology Branch in 1990.
His responsibilities included providing electronics assembly product assurance for the production of Navy
missile and weapon systems. He also initiated an applied R&D program to develop environmentally
compliant materials and processes used in the production of Navy missiles. This effort resulted in Dr. Fischer being awarded the EPA Stratospheric Ozone Layer Protection Award in 1993. In 1994, he was assigned as the head of the Chemistry and Materials Division at NAWCWD. In this position, he was responsible for the basic and applied research of materials and processes for Navy missile and weapon systems.
In 1996, he assumed the position of Advanced Technology Manager for the Tomahawk Cruise
Missile Project Office at NAWCWD. The focus of his efforts was on the identification of technology
requirements for the Tomahawk missile, development of technology programs to address these
requirements, and the subsequent transition of mature technology to Tomahawk production and
deployment. Concurrent with these duties, Dr. Fischer was leader of the NAWCWD Tomahawk Block IV
Integrated Product Team.
Because of his experience with the Tomahawk weapon system, Dr. Fischer was named Deputy of
the NAVAIR Uninhabited Combat Aerial Vehicle Advanced Development Project Office. His
responsibilities included development of a new weapon system concept to address future requirements of Naval Aviation.
Dr. Fischer was appointed to the Senior Executive Service in 1998 and served as the Associate
Director of the Naval Aviation Science and Technology Office (NAVSTO) and head of the Research
Department at the Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division (NAWCWD), China Lake, California. As
head of the Research Department, Dr. Fischer managed a program of research in physics, chemistry,
engineering sciences, and computational sciences; the Technology Advancement Group, which covers
coordination of the Center's Applied Research and Advanced Development Programs; the Technology
Transfer Program; and the Technical Library.
In 2001, Dr. Fischer was appointed as Director of the Naval Aviation Science & Technology
Office. His duties included planning and coordination of the Naval Air Systems Command's Science and
In 2004, he assumed the position of civilian director of the Research & Specialty Engineering
Department. In this role, Dr. Fischer is responsible for the Naval Aviation Enterprise's systems
engineering disciplines of standardization, metrology, mass properties, reliability and maintainability, electromagnetic environmental effects, survivability and threat lethality, materials engineering, manufacturing and quality, as well as research in chemistry, physics, and computational sciences. In December 2006, he was appointed civilian director of NAVAIR's Systems Engineering Department (AIR-4.1). In this position, he was the lead for Naval Aviation Systems Engineering tasking and functions for the complete life cycle of all aviation and aviation related systems. AIR-4.1 has >1800 personnel dispersed across 7 geographic locations including warfare centers and Fleet Readiness Centers. This organization supports aviation acquisition and in-service engineering programs for both Navy and Marine Corps. Direct budget responsibility was >$200M. In January 2008, Dr. was assigned additional duty as NAVAIR Chief Technology Officer (AIR-4.0T) responsible for the development and implementation of the Naval Aviation Enterprise Science & Technology (S&T) program. CTO responsibilities included the development of the Naval Aviation Enterprise strategic S&T plan, technology requirements, and advancement of innovative concepts and technology.
In March 2009, Dr. Fischer was selected as the Director of Defense Laboratory Programs. In this
position, he is responsible for the development and implementation of policies for DoD's laboratory