Lisa Sawyer Samp Joins CSIS International Security Program as Fellow

WASHINGTON, November 2, 2015 – The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) is pleased to announce that Lisa Sawyer Samp is joining the International Security Program as a fellow. She will focus on U.S. defense strategy and policy toward Europe.

“Lisa brings to CSIS tremendous knowledge of the security issues confronting Europe and a deep understanding of U.S. and NATO defense dynamics, capabilities, and posture,” said Dr. Kathleen Hicks, senior vice president, Henry A. Kissinger Chair, and director of the International Security Program. “Her real-world experience strengthens CSIS’s ability to provide defense policy insights for a Europe facing multiple security challenges, including a more aggressive Russia.”

Ms. Samp comes to CSIS from the Department of Defense. Most recently, she was chief of staff to the assistant secretary of defense for international security affairs, working on a range of issues related to U.S. defense policy in the Middle East, Russia/Ukraine/Eurasia, and Africa, among others. From February 2014 to April 2015, she served on the National Security Council staff as director for NATO and European strategic affairs.

“We are very fortunate to have someone of Lisa’s extensive experience, knowledge, and understanding of NATO join CSIS at this critical moment,” said Heather A. Conley, senior vice president for Europe, Eurasia, and the Arctic, and director of the Europe Program. “Lisa joins a growing CSIS analytical team dedicated to strengthening NATO’s collective defense and deterrence capabilities and seeking innovative transatlantic defense solutions to respond to an increasingly demanding regional security environment.”

Ms. Samp is a magna cum laude graduate of Baylor University with a B.A. in international studies. She also holds a M.A. in international affairs and development from George Washington University.


The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) is a bipartisan, nonprofit organization founded in 1962 and headquartered in Washington, D.C. It seeks to advance global security and prosperity by providing strategic insights and policy solutions to decisionmakers.