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About Systems Engineering

Leadership Team
Photo of Principal Deputy Director, Kristen Baldwin Kristen J. Baldwin, Deputy Director, Strategic Technology Protection and Exploitation
Ms. Kristen Baldwin was appointed the Deputy Director, Strategic Technology Protection and Exploitation in September 2018. In this role, Ms. Baldwin serves the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering as the Department of Defense (DoD) lead for maintaining technology advantage by mitigating exploitation and vulnerabilities of critical missions, programs, technologies, and the industrial base. Ms. Baldwin oversees program protection policy and related hardware and software assurance, anti-tamper, and critical technical information protection practices. She oversees the DoD National Manufacturing Institutes and the Manufacturing Technology program. Ms. Baldwin leads the DoD strategy for Trusted and Assured Systems, Microelectronics Innovation for National Security, and the Joint Federated Assurance Center.

Before this appointment, Ms. Baldwin served as the Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Systems Engineering (DASD(SE)) and Principal Deputy, Systems Engineering, overseeing engineering policy, practice, and the DoD engineering workforce. She led digital engineering, system security engineering, and system of systems engineering initiatives and was a founder of the Systems Engineering Research Center, a University Affiliated Research Center.

A member of the Senior Executive Service since 2007, Ms. Baldwin served as Deputy Director, Software Engineering and System Assurance. Before joining the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Ms. Baldwin served as a science and technology advisor in the Army’s Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations and Plans. She began her career at the U.S. Army’s Armament Research, Development, and Engineering Center, Picatinny Arsenal.

Ms. Baldwin is a recipient of the Meritorious Presidential Rank award in recognition of exemplary service, and the National Defense Industrial Association Lt Gen Thomas R. Ferguson, Jr., Systems Engineering Excellence Award. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Virginia Tech and a Master of Systems Management from the Florida Institute of Technology.


Photo of Director for Engineering Enterprise Robert A. Gold, Director, Engineering Enterprise
Mr. Robert Gold serves as Director of the Engineering Enterprise within the Office of DASD(SE). Mr. Gold is a member of the Senior Executive Service. He is responsible for systems engineering-related policy and guidance, specialty engineering, engineering tools and environments, hardware and software assurance, and defense standardization. He oversees workforce development for the defense acquisition engineering career fields of Engineering (ENG) and Production, Quality and Manufacturing (PQM). His specialty engineering responsibilities include reliability and maintainability, system safety, manufacturing, human systems integration, and the DoD Value Engineering program.

Mr. Gold has more than 30 years of experience with the Department. Before joining ODASD(SE), he served as the Director for Information Systems and Cyber Security within the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (OASD(R&E)). Within OUSD(AT&L), he has also served as Director for Engineering and Advanced Prototypes and Deputy Director for Space and Intelligence. He has served in senior positions with technical oversight of DoD science and technology (S&T) activities in software, embedded computers, and computer engineering applications. He has developed policy and proposed legislation in the areas of software and space acquisition, and he initiated efforts to update Defense software training and to revise the Information Technology (IT) career field.

Mr. Gold has provided acquisition and technical expertise for major defense programs, including the Air Force F 22, F-35, Missile Defense Agency Initial Defensive Operations, and the Navy STANDARD Missile. He has provided review, oversight, and advocacy for S&T investments in software, cyber, and complex networking. Mr. Gold served in a variety of acquisition and engineering positions at the Naval Sea Systems Command on Surface Combatants and Fast Attack Submarines. He managed the multimillion-dollar software efforts for the STANDARD Missile portion of the Navy Area Theater Ballistic Missile program and the Navy’s Cooperative Engagement Capability.

Mr. Gold received a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Lehigh University and a Master of Science in Systems Engineering from Virginia Tech. He also holds a Public Management Certificate from Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. He has published and lectured in military communications, software acquisition, software assurance, and Technology Readiness Assessments and has chaired and sponsored workshops and conferences on software. He is a member of the Defense Acquisition Workforce and is Level III qualified in Program Management, Systems Engineering, and S&T Management.