David A. Cooper, Ph.D.
The James V. Forrestal Professor & Chair of the Department of National Security Affairs
National Security Affairs
Dr. David Cooper joined the faculty of the U.S. Naval War College in 2010 as Chair of the Department of National Security Affairs and holds appointment as The James V. Forrestal Professor of National Security Affairs. His areas of scholarly and professional expertise include nonproliferation, arms control and disarmament, weapons of mass destruction, multilateral negotiations and organizations, international relations, and foreign policy analysis.
He is a scholar-practitioner who served for nearly two decades on the professional staff at the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) where he held career rank in the Senior Executive Service (SES). His last SES assignment was with the then fledgling U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM), where he established and led a joint directorate (J-9) responsible for partnership and strategic communication. Before that he served as the Pentagon's Principal Director for Homeland Security Integration, managing strategic planning and coordination of the Defense Department’s various homeland security missions. Previously he served as the Director of the Office of Nonproliferation Policy, overseeing efforts to prevent the spread of weapons of mass destruction. In this capacity he also led the U.S. Delegation to the Proliferation Security Initiative (PSI) Operational Experts Group and served as the U.S. Representative to the second United Nations Panel of Governmental Experts on Missiles. Prior to that he was the Deputy Director and then Director of the Office of Strategic Arms Control Policy, managing the negotiation and implementation of the "Moscow Treaty" and overseeing various other bilateral and multilateral nuclear treaties and negotiations such as the Intermediate Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, Strategic Arms Reductions Treaty (START), and the Fissile Material Cutoff Treaty (FMCT) negotiations. Over the course of his career he has traveled to more than fifty five countries and numerous other territories. He first came to the Pentagon in 1990 as a Presidential Management Fellow.
He holds a PhD in Political Science and International Relations from The Australian National University (2000), a Master of International Affairs from Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs (1990), and is a graduate of Oberlin College (1987). He is the author of a book and various chapters and articles including most recently in the journals Foreign Policy Analysis, The Nonproliferation Review, and The Journal of Diplomacy and International Affairs. He is a member of the International Institute of Strategic Studies and a number of other scholarly and professional organizations. He has held previous academic appointments as a resident Senior Research Fellow at the National Defense University's Center for the Study of Weapons of Mass Destruction, Adjunct Professor of U.S. Foreign Policy at American University's School of International Service, and Adjunct Associate Professor of International Affairs at Georgetown University's Walsh School of Foreign Service.
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