Ron Vien

Naval Undersea Warfare Center, Division Newport
Technical Director (SES)
2022 Undersea Warfare Fall Conference

Ronald A. Vien, a member of the federal government's Senior Executive Service (SES) since April 2018, serves as the Technical Director of the Naval Undersea Warfare Center (NUWC) Division Newport. In this role, he is responsible for providing research, development, test and evaluation, engineering, analysis and assessment, as well as Fleet support capabilities for submarines, autonomous underwater systems, and offensive and defensive undersea weapon systems, and stewards existing and emerging technologies to advance the state of the art in undersea warfare.

Mr. Vien concurrently serves as the Director, Undersea Warfare Systems Engineering, where he is responsible for oversight of 12 technical warrant holders to ensure that the Navy maintains its position as the foremost technical authority over a broad portfolio of undersea warfare systems.

Prior to assuming his current position, Mr. Vien led the Sensors and SONAR Systems Department at NUWC Division Newport. As a senior scientific technical manager (SSTM) he led a diversified team of over 600 government and 250 contractor scientists, engineers, and technicians engaged in a broad spectrum of Naval research, development, engineering, and acquisition in pursuit of advancing the state-of-the-art in sensor and sonar system designs.

Mr. Vien began his career in 1987 while attending the University of Massachusetts as a part-time employee. In 1989 he accepted a permanent position in the Submarine Combat Systems Department where he produced hardware prototypes for both the Los Angeles- and Virginia-class submarines.

In 1997, Mr. Vien transferred to the Surface Undersea Warfare Department to become the operations manager of the AN/SQQ-89 surface ship sonar system Land Based Integration Test Site (LBITS). In this role, he supervised 25 engineers and technicians, and managed a 15,000 square-foot laboratory containing all fleet variants of the AN/SQQ-89 sonar system along with over 100 computer workstations.

From 1998 to 2004, Mr. Vien served as head of the Operational Systems Engineering Branch, where he managed dual teams in the development, integration, and deployment of surface ship sonar systems and the design and development of the SPARTAN unmanned surface vehicle.

From 2004 to 2014, Mr. Vien served as head of the Sensors and Arrays Division responsible for managing an annual budget of $90 million and supervised a collaborative team of 125 government and 150 contractor scientists, engineers and technicians in all phases of sonar system wet-end design. Under his direction, the Sensors and Arrays Division provided comprehensive lifecycle system engineering, featuring expertise in the roles of Systems Acquisition, Technical Direction Agent, and In-Service Engineering.

Mr. Vien attended the University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth where he earned a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering technology in 1988 and a second bachelor's degree in electrical engineering the following year. He received his Master of Business Administration degree from Bryant University in Smithfield, Rhode Island in 1996.

Mr. Vien is a 2003 graduate of the Office of the Secretary Defense's Executive Leadership Development Program and is certified at DAWIA Program Management Level III.