Senior Senate defense committee staffer joins NDIA

By Tony Bertuca / January 11, 2022 at 11:19 AM

Arun Seraphin, a professional staff member with the Senate Armed Services Committee who has influenced some of the most significant defense acquisition reform measures of the past 20 years, is leaving government to become deputy director of the National Defense Industrial Association's Emerging Technologies Institute.

“In this role, Seraphin will provide strategic direction for the organization, determine research priorities and manage research and policy projects,” according to an NDIA announcement.

During his time in the Senate, Seraphin specialized in defense acquisition policy, Pentagon management as well as defense science and technology.

“I am excited by the opportunity to help expand the activities of the Emerging Technology Institute and contribute to NDIA’s efforts to ensure that the nation is developing and deploying the best new technologies for national security,” Seraphin said in the NDIA statement. “I look forward to applying my government and technical experience to shape policies, programs and activities that can bolster innovation in support of national defense missions and economic growth.”

Mark Lewis, ETI’s executive director and former director of defense research and engineering for the Defense Department, referred to Seraphin as “a Washington, DC icon.”

“Arun helped shape many elements of the Defense Department’s science and technology enterprise,” Lewis said. “Arun is one of our nation’s most influential thought leaders at the intersection of science and defense, and we are incredibly fortunate to have him on board at NDIA.”

Seraphin, who holds a doctorate in electronic materials from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has worked in government for roughly 20 years. He rejoined the committee staff in 2014, after previously serving there between 2001 and 2010. He has also served as principal assistant director for national security and international affairs in the White House Office of Science and Technology.

“Seraphin also was instrumental in forming science and technology policies with the House of Representatives, the Institute of Defense Analyses and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency,” according to NDIA.