Richard De Fatta

Director, Space and Missile Defense Center of Excellence

Richard P. De Fatta joined USASMDC and the Senior Executive Service in 2013 and has more than 40 years of professional leadership experience, in both government and contractor positions, with 36 years specific to acquisition: development, testing, production, fielding, sustainment, and Life Cycle support of major weapons systems and emerging technologies. Significant programs include: Pershing II, Laser Countermeasure Weapons, Combat Vehicle Survivability, Kwajalein Missile Range, Medium Extended Air Defense System, STINGER, Sentinel Radar, Surface Launched AMRAAM, Mobile Tactical High Energy Laser, JLENS, Integrated Fire Control, BMDS systems and testing, and Targets and Countermeasures. Mr. De Fatta currently serves as the director, Space and Missile Defense Center of Excellence, U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command, responsible for space and global ballistic missile defense doctrine and training, concept development, decision support, the Army Capability Managers for Space and High Altitude and Strategic Missile Defense, and Army Space Personnel Development Office. Mr. De Fatta’s previous Senior Executive Service positions include director, Capability Development and Integration, Future Warfare Center; director, Air and Missile Defense Technical Center; and acting director, Technical Center, U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Forces Strategic Command where he was responsible for managing research, development, and test programs for space, missile defense, cyber, directed energy, and related technologies. He was also responsible for the management of the Ronald Reagan Ballistic Missile Defense Test Site in the Marshall Islands.

He retired from the Army as a colonel in 2005 and spent more than seven years in senior contractor positions providing systems engineering, integration, test, program management, and technical support to Department of Defense programs responsible for the development, production, and fielding of missile defense weapon systems.

Mr. De Fatta’s previous military assignments include: project manager, Cruise Missile Defense Systems (formerly SHORAD), Program Executive Office for Missiles and Space; chief of staff to the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics, and Technology; product manager for the U.S. Medium Extended Air Defense System, Program Executive Office for Air and Missile Defense; director, Kwajalein Missile Range, USASMDC/ARSTRAT; product manager, Combat Vehicle Signature Management Program, Program Executive Office for Armored Systems Modernization; PEO Air Defense liaison officer for Europe; Laser Countermeasure program manager, Directed Energy Directorate, U.S. Army Missile Command Research Development Engineering Center; and Research and Development coordinator, Pershing Project Office.

Mr. De Fatta graduated in 1978 from the U.S. Military Academy with a Bachelor of Science in engineering and later earned a Master of Science in engineering physics from the Air Force Institute of Technology and a Master of Science in systems management from the Florida Institute of Technology. He attended the U.S. Army War College and U.S. Army Command and General Staff College. A member of the Army Acquisition Corps since its inception, he completed the Executive PM, Advanced PM, and Military Acquisition Management courses, and is level III certified in program management.

During his military career, Mr. De Fatta received the Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit (two oak leaf clusters), Meritorious Service Medal (three oak leaf clusters), ArmyCommendation Medal (three oak leaf clusters), the Army Achievement Medal, Army Staff Identification Badge, and Parachutist Badge.

December 2020