The Board of Directors of the Center for a New American Security (CNAS) is pleased to announce that it has selected the Honorable Robert O. Work as the Center's next CEO. Work is currently the Under Secretary of the Navy and will assume his new role at CNAS on April 22. He succeeds Nate Fick, who stepped down in November 2012 to become CEO of Endgame, Inc., a venture-backed provider of advanced cyber security solutions. Under Secretary Work joins the CNAS executive team with President Richard Fontaine and Vice President and Director of Studies Shawn Brimley.
"Bob Work is in the very front ranks of those thinking about and working to strengthen our national security," said CNAS Chairman of the Board of Directors Dr. Richard Danzig. "More than a thought leader, he is also a widely admired leader in all dimensions. His qualities of character combine with qualities of mind to make him a worthy successor to Nate Fick and CNAS co-founders Kurt Campbell and Michèle Flournoy as the new head of CNAS. We are delighted to have him."
Under Secretary Work serves as the deputy and principal assistant to the Secretary of the Navy, and as Chief Operations/Management Officer of the Department of the Navy. As such, he oversees the day-to-day management of the U.S. global naval enterprise and the development of the department's $170 billion program and budget. He is a leading expert on defense and naval affairs, including fleet design, power projection against future anti-access/area denial networks, the changing nature of undersea warfare and power projection against regional adversaries armed with nuclear weapons.
"Bob brings to CNAS his vast substantive expertise on many of the most critical defense issues facing the nation, along with the leadership experience and management acumen gained in running the day-to-day operations of the Department of the Navy," said Michèle Flournoy, former Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, who is also a member of the CNAS Board of Directors. "Bob's incisive intellect and strategic vision will be invaluable as he leads CNAS into its next phase. I enjoyed working with him immensely during our time together at the Pentagon and look forward to working with him again as he assumes his new role."
Under Secretary Work was a distinguished graduate of the Naval Reserve Officers Training Course at the University of Illinois, and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the U.S. Marine Corps in August 1974. During his 27-year career in the Marines, he held a wide range of command, leadership and management positions. He commanded an artillery battery and artillery battalion, and was the base commander at Camp Fuji, Japan. His last assignment was as Military Assistant and Senior Aide to Dr. Danzig, when he served as the 71st Secretary of the Navy.
"I'm very excited for the organization that we'll have a proven thinker and doer at the helm with Bob's assumption of the CEO position," said CNAS board member and former Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage.
After retiring from the Marine Corps, Work joined the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA), first as the senior fellow for maritime affairs, and later as the vice president for strategic studies. In these positions, he focused on defense strategy and programs, revolutions in war, Department of Defense transformation and maritime affairs. He wrote and spoke extensively on U.S. Navy and Marine Corps strategies and programs; directed and analyzed war games for the Office of Net Assessment and Office of the Secretary of Defense; contributed to Department of Defense studies on global basing and emerging military missions; and provided support for the 2006 Quadrennial Defense Review.
"Since its inception in 2007, CNAS has established a reputation for innovative, pragmatic and bi-partisan thinking about national security affairs," said Under Secretary Work. "I am both honored and excited at the prospect of leading such a great organization, and working with superb people like Richard Danzig, Michèle Flournoy, Richard Armitage, Richard Fontaine and Shawn Brimley to take CNAS to the next level."
"Bob Work is renowned both as a leader and a top thinker on national security affairs, and I am delighted at the opportunity to work with him," said Mr. Fontaine. "He joins CNAS at a time when its mission - to develop strong, pragmatic and principled national security and defense policies - is of paramount importance."