June 23rd, 2020
The Pentagon’s top technology official and his deputy are resigning next month, a Defense Department official confirmed on Tuesday.
Mike Griffin, the Pentagon’s first undersecretary of research and engineering, and his deputy, Lisa Porter, will leave July 10, the official said.
The resignations were first reported by Inside Defense.
Griffin, who took on the role in early 2018, and Porter said in a letter to staff that “a private-sector opportunity has presented itself to us, offering an opportunity we have decided to pursue together,” Defense News reported.
“It has been a pleasure leading this great team over the past few years. We greatly appreciate your hard work, diligence, integrity, and devotion to technical excellence and technical truth in furtherance of the R&E mission,” the two wrote, according to the outlet. “We wish you all the very best.”
Defense Secretary Mark Esper on Wednesday confirmed the resignations and praised Griffin and Porter’s work.
“During their tenures, Dr. Griffin and Dr. Porter advanced critical work on the department’s modernization priorities,” Esper said in a statement. “They leave an office with a legacy of excellence in the research and development of technology that ensures American military advantage on land, at sea, in the air and in space. Mike and Lisa have my sincere thanks for their dedicated service to the department and the nation, and I wish them the very best as they enter this new chapter of their lives.”
The two are the third and fourth officials to announce their resignation in the last week.
Kathryn Wheelbarger, the acting assistant Defense secretary for international security affairs, submitted her resignation on June 17, five days after President Trump pulled her name as the intended nominee to be deputy undersecretary of Defense for intelligence.
And Elaine McCusker, the Pentagon’s acting comptroller who questioned the Trump administration for its withholding of aid to Ukraine last year, submitted her resignation a day earlier after the White House in early March pulled her nomination for the official comptroller role.