Principal Director for Strategic Initiatives, National Security and Space
Jennifer Santos is Principal Director for Strategic Initiatives at Draper. She joined the company in March 2021. With more than 24 years of national security leadership experience, Jennifer has served as a tri-sector leader, across government, military and industry, in roles at the Department of Defense, Senate Appropriations Defense Subcommittee and in the private sector. Jennifer was most recently naval research and
development investment executive for the Department of the Navy, responsible for leading the strategic budget analysis of naval research and development investment strategy.
Previously, Jennifer served as the deputy assistant secretary of defense for industrial policy (IndPol) at the Department of Defense, responsible for analyzing the capabilities, health and policies concerning the industrial base on which the DoD relies for current and future warfighting capabilities.
Earlier in her career, Jennifer served as vice president for Air Force and DoD innovation at consulting firm Cypress International; as a professional staff member on the Senate Appropriations Committee for Defense; and in a finance and acquisitions role in the Department of the Air Force.
Jennifer holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Wheeling Jesuit University and an Aerospace master’s in business administration from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. She serves regularly as a guest lecturer at the Defense Acquisition University and numerous DoD organizations. Among her publications, Jennifer cowrote “The Role and Nature of Anti-Tamper Techniques in U.S. Defense Acquisition” for Acquisition Review Quarterly.