Video On Demand

Strengthening the U.S. Industrial Base with Hon. Dr. William A. LaPlante

September 26, 2023 • 12:00 – 1:00 pm EDT

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Please join the CSIS International Security Program and the U.S. Naval Institute for a Maritime Security Dialogue event featuring the Honorable Dr. William A. LaPlante, Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment. Dr. LaPlante will sit down with Dr. Seth G. Jones, CSIS senior vice president and director of the International Security Program, to discuss the Department of Defense’s efforts to strengthen the defense industrial base and supply chains  –– including to enhance deterrence in the Indo-Pacific.

The Maritime Security Dialogue series brings together CSIS and the U.S. Naval Institute, two of the nation's most respected non-partisan institutions. The series highlights the unique challenges facing the Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard from national level maritime policy to naval concept development and program design. Given budgetary challenges, technological opportunities, and ongoing strategic adjustments, the nature and employment of U.S. maritime forces are likely to undergo significant change over the next ten to fifteen years. The Maritime Security Dialogue provides an unmatched forum for discussion of these issues with the nation’s maritime leaders.

This event is made possible by support from HII.


Hon. Dr. William LaPlante

Senate-confirmed in April 2022, the Honorable Dr. William A. LaPlante serves as the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment (USD(A&S)). In this role, he is responsible to the Secretary of Defense for all matters pertaining to acquisition; contract administration; logistics and materiel readiness; installations and environment; operational energy; nuclear, chemical, and biological defense; the acquisition workforce; and the defense industrial base.

Prior to this appointment, Dr. LaPlante served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Draper Laboratory. Previously, he was senior vice president and general manager at MITRE National Security. Dr. LaPlante served as the Senate-confirmed Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics from 2014 to 2017. Prior to this position, Dr. LaPlante spent 26 years at Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL), ultimately leading the Global Engagement Department where he was responsible for all of APL’s work supporting offensive strike military capabilities. He also served as a member of the APL’s Executive Council.

Dr. LaPlante has been a member of several scientific boards and commissions focused on maintaining national security, including the U.S. Strategic Command Senior Advisory Group, Naval Research Advisory Committee, and Defense Science Board. Dr. LaPlante holds a doctorate in mechanical engineering from the Catholic University of America, a master’s degree in applied physics from The Johns Hopkins University, and a bachelor’s degree in engineering physics from the University of Illinois.

Contact Information

Seth G. Jones
Senior Vice President; Harold Brown Chair; and Director, International Security Program