Dr. Paul Lopata

Office of the Director of Defense Research and Engineering for Modernization
Principal Director for Quantum Science
2021 Pacific Operational Science & Technology (POST) Conference

Paul Lopata serves as the Principal Director for Quantum Science in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering. In this role he leads the Department’s efforts at technology modernization in quantum science, one of DoD’s top technology modernization priority areas. He currently serves as Executive Secretary for the Defense Science Board’s Task Force on Applications of Quantum Technologies.

In his previous role as Associate Director for Cyber Technologies in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Dr. Lopata was engaged with coordination and oversight of cyber research across the Department of Defense. This work included providing support for implementing the 2015 Department of Defense Cyber Strategy, and representing the Office of Secretary of Defense in shaping the 2016 Federal Cybersecurity Research & Development Strategic Plan. He has served on several cyber research coordinating bodies, including the SCORE interagency cyber research committee and the Cyber Security and Information Assurance Interagency Working Group. His efforts at coordinating research projects between the DoD and international partners led to fruitful bilateral engagements with Australia, Japan, the United Kingdom and others.

Prior to these positions, Dr. Lopata was a Researcher and Program Manager at the Laboratory for Physical Sciences focused on quantum computing research. There he managed a multi-year international research effort advancing the fundamentals of quantum computing technology. Earlier career roles included consulting at Booz Allen Hamilton in support of cutting-edge government research programs at DARPA and IARPA, and a post-doctoral National Research Council Fellowship at the Army Research Lab where he investigated the effectiveness of quantum sensors.

Dr. Lopata is a recognized technical leader on the topics of cyber security and quantum information science. He is regularly invited to speak to diverse audiences on these subjects, and has served on numerous technical advisory boards across the Department and for Federally Funded Research and Development Centers.  He received his Ph.D. in mathematical physics from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and a Bachelor of Engineering degree from Stevens Institute of Technology.