Dr. Keith A. Krapels, who was appointed to the senior executive service in June 2018, became the director of the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command’s Technical Center in June 2023. He is responsible for leading and managing research, development, and test programs for space, missile defense, cyber, directed energy and related technologies. He is also responsible for the management of the Ronald Reagan Ballistic Missile Defense Test Site in the Marshall Islands.
Dr. Krapels served in the Navy as an EA-6B Prowler Electronics Countermeasures officer flying 52 combat missions before moving to the Navy Reserve. He retired in 2017 as a captain, having deployed overseas 10 times, five of which were for combat operations. During his career, he acquired both tactical and technical research and development expertise in design, modeling, analysis, simulation, build, test, rapid fielding, and the employment of military sensors and countermeasures to sensors.
Dr. Krapels’ previous senior executive experience was as the director for Applied Technology (Hypersonic, Directed Energy, and Integrated Sensing) and the director for Command, Control, Computers, Communications, Cyber, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance and Electronic Warfare at the Undersecretary of Defense for Research and Engineering. Prior to those positions, he was the director for the Sensors and Electronics Directorate at the U.S. Army Research Laboratory.
He is a graduate of the University of Memphis. He holds a doctorate in electrical engineering, a master’s degree in electrical engineering, a Bachelor of Arts in history, and a Bachelor of Science in applied mathematics.
Dr. Krapels’ awards and recognitions include the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Acquisition, Logistics, and Technology) Research and Development Achievement Award; Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Development, and Acquisition) Acquisition Excellence Award for Technology Transition; Meritorious Service Medal (three awards); Air Medal (two awards); Navy Commendation Medal (four awards, one with combat distinguishing “V” device); Navy Achievement Medals (two awards). He is a fellow of the Military Sensing Symposia and the International Society of Optics and Photonics. He has published 105 papers and has one patent.