Call of Duty: How STEM Can Change the Battlefield
With the next generation of warfighters taking on the face of a video gamer in the States vs. a camouflaged soldier in the battlefield, STEM skills are increasingly important to today's military in order to continue protecting those that protect us. Activity-based intelligence, IT security infrastructure, drone navigation, "invisible" armor, aerial sensors – it's not "virtual reality"; it's the critical engineering needed in the defense world. But maintaining it is proving to be a challenge. It's not just that talent is going elsewhere; there's a considerable lack of female and minority representation in the field. Hear why defense company BAE Systems CIO Michael Bennett is touting STEM as the "great equalizer", and how his industry is using social media to attract employees to defense-related professions that would typically take their tech talent to traditionally-digital companies.
Michael is Senior Vice President of Information Management and the Chief Information Officer of BAE Systems responsible for all BAE Systems, Inc. IT policy, security and execution. He also leads the development and implementation of information technology strategy across the enterprise.
Prior to this position, Michael was the Vice President and General Manager of the Information Solutions Line of Business, Enterprise Solutions Business Area. His organization was responsible for IT services provided to BAE’s 60,000 U.S. internal IT users and is the focal point of BAE’s Cyber Space business.
Earlier, Michael took on the year and a half assignment as Vice President, Acquisition Integration for BAE Systems' Land and Armaments Operating Group integrating the $4B Armor Holdings, Inc. (AHI) acquisition into Land and Armaments. He managed the integration of functions as well as operations such that legacy AHI was successfully integrated.
He previously served as the Vice President, Contracts, Procurement, Pricing and Facilities of BAE Systems' Customer Solutions Operating Group. Michael created that organization in a newly established Customer Solutions OG.
Michael also spent 18 years of his career with Northrop Grumman. His last position was Vice President, Contracts, Pricing, Procurement and Risk Management for Northrop’s Information Technology Sector.
Prior to that position, Michael practiced law full time for 20 years in various positions with Northrop Grumman, EDS Corporation, and the U.S. Federal Government.
Michael is a recipient of the Washington Business Journal 2012 Minority Business Leader Award.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts with honors from Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. He received his Juris Doctorate from the National Law Center of George Washington University in Washington, D.C. Michael is a long-time licensed practitioner of both the District of Columbia and the Virginia Bars.