The Potomac Institute is pleased to announce that Laura Worcester has been named Vice President for Program Development and Execution in the Strategy, Plans and Programs Division. After the Institute's CEO, Mike Swetnam, she is the second longest serving member of the Institute, and has made many contributions to our success. Laura will be an excellent addition to the leadership and management team and will bring new energy to the Institute’s efforts.
Ms. Worcester brings over 26 years experience in science and technology (S&T) program management to lead the planning, development, management, and execution of programs at the Potomac Institute. Her duties will include strategic planning and analysis based on National Security and National Military Strategies; interpretation of military roles, missions and operational concept analysis; identification of needed capabilities and gaps in available systems; identification of potential S&T solutions and integration of S&T programs from multiple functional and technology investment areas to provide full or partial solutions to capability gaps.
As a participant in the Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA) Program, Ms. Worcester served in the Office of Naval Research Expeditionary Maneuver Warfare and Combating Terrorism S&T Department as the Deputy for Planning, Programing, and Operations from 2005 to 2013. She established the departmental processes for the execution of over $200M in USN/USMC S&T, and was responsible for day-to-day operations to include human capital strategy, outreach, and contract management. Prior to that Ms. Worcester was the Director of the Human-Technology Integration and Assessment Center at the Potomac Institute where she provided technical oversight on many DoD and Naval S&T development projects. This included all management oversight on studies and analyses being conducted within her Center. Ms. Worcester is a Certified Modeling and Simulation Professional, has a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from The American University, and a Bachelor of Arts from the Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. She has authored and co-authored numerous articles and technical reports/presentations for a variety of technical and academic publications.
Ms. Worcester has developed technical expertise in a number of areas including Science and Technology Program Management, RDT&E Budgeting and Execution, Congressional Interest Programs, Human Subject Use Policies and Procedures, Modeling and Simulation, Virtual Reality, Defense Acquisition Process, Training and Human Performance Science and Technology, Cognition and Decision Making, Technology Transition, and Public – Private Partnerships.
Amb. David Smith, an expert on geopolitics and Russia, discussed the current situation in Ukraine and the interaction of traditional geopolitics and new cyber elements of conflict. His in-depth knowledge of Russian politics and personal experience in Georgia helped shed light on the Ukraine conflict. This was the first US presentation of a new briefing that has already been given in three countries. Topics included:
- Cyber happenings and non-happenings in the Ukraine-Russia conflict
- Cyber war or information war?
- Criminals and hacktivists at 124 gigabytes per second
- Pulling Crimea into the Runet
Read more: Ukraine 2014: Fiber Optics and Geopolitics