One of the Pentagon’s most tech-forward leaders is heading to a new job at Google. Regina Dugan has been the director of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which works on military technology for the U.S. Department of Defense, for the past three years.
“Regina is a technical pioneer who brought the future of technology to the military during her time at DARPA,” a spokesperson for Google told CNET. “She will be a real asset to Google, and we are thrilled she is joining the team.”
During Dugan’s tenure at DARPA, she focused on innovation and technology development, cybersecurity, and counterterrorism and defense. According to Wired, she pushed crowdsourcing and reached out to the hacker community, which was an unusual move for a DARPA director.
Despite Dugan’s strong leadership at DARPA, she was seen as a controversial figure at times, reports Wired. One reason is because while she was DARPA director, the agency awarded contracts to a company that Dugan co-founded and still partially owns–RedX Defense–that is now being audited by the Pentagon’s Office of Inspector General (OIG).
However, according to Lt. Col. Melinda Morgan, a spokesperson for the Office of the Secretary of Defense, “Dr. Dugan’s departure is not related to an OIG investigation. The OIG conducts regular audits of Defense agency contracts and ethics programs; as a Defense agency, this includes DARPA.”