Retired Navy SEAL and Vice Adm. Joseph Kernan, most recently senior vice president of corporate development for SAP National Security Services, has begun his new role as undersecretary of defense for intelligence.
Kernan was nominated last summer by President Donald Trump and the Senate confirmed him Nov. 16. He took office Dec. 1, 2017.
At his confirmation hearing, Kernan highlighted the need for defined cyber-defense planning and leadership.
“It’s such a prolific and important issue to be addressed because it involves everybody in our country, not just civilian, not just military — our infrastructure, our networks, all those things have to be addressed,” he said then about the need for a cross-government cyber-defense strategy
This is not the first time Kernan has been appointed to a key national security position within the government. In 2009, then-President Barack Obama named him senior military assistant to then-Secretary of Defense Bob Gates.
He is a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy and the National Defense University and also serves as the chair of NS2 Serves, a veteran training and employment program, as well as on the board of directors for the National Navy SEAL Museum.