Dr. Christine Michienzi

MMR Defense Solutions, LLC
Manufacturing Division Meeting : Industry Panel

Dr. Christine (Chris) Michienzi recently served as a senior executive in the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD).  She was the Senior Technology Advisor for the Undersecretary of Defense (USD) for Acquisition and Sustainment (A&S), where she advised the USD and other senior DoD leaders on sourcing innovative solutions for the design, development, and production of DoD systems, including facilitating technology transitions to provide cutting edge capability to the warfighter.  

Dr. Michienzi also provided technical expertise and strategic and policy guidance to the USD and the Assistant Secretary of Defense (ASD) for Industrial Base Policy (IBP) – where she served as the Chief Technology Officer – on industrial base/supply chains for critical defense technology areas such as missiles and munitions, microelectronics, critical chemicals, hypersonics, and nuclear and space systems.  She bridged government (U.S. and international) and private sector endeavors as she led the Department’s efforts to increase industrial base capacity to accelerate the replenishment of weapons systems donated to Ukraine, enabling DoD to donate even more.  Dr. Michienzi utilized her Defense Production Act (DPA) expertise – Title I Defense Priorities and Allocations System, and Title III investments – for Ukraine, COVID response, and other critical national security supply chain efforts.  

Dr. Michienzi also served as the USD’s lead for microelectronics and was instrumental to ensuring inclusion of national security requirements and sustainability initiatives in the Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors (CHIPS) Act authorization and appropriation by collaborating with Congressional members and staffers.  She also served as the A&S liaison to the Department of Commerce, who is responsible for executing CHIPS.  

Previously she served as the Missiles and Munitions Industrial Analyst then Director of Industrial Base Assessments in IBP - leading a team of industrial analysts responsible for assessing the capabilities, health, and resiliency of the industrial base and supply chains on which the Department relies for current and future warfighting capabilities.  She and her team developed mitigations to address identified industrial base risks and issues in all industrial sectors, enhancing Department readiness.

Dr. Michienzi began in OSD as the Insensitive Munitions lead for the DoD, where she led a large, multi-Service Science and Technology program, developing technologies to make DoD munitions safer.  She also served as the missiles and munitions technical expert for the Technical Director, while at the Navy’s Program Executive Office, Integrated Warfare Systems (PEO IWS), Surface Ship Weapons. 
Dr. Michienzi began her career with DoD at the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Indian Head Division, initially developing new explosives and propellants for DoD weapons systems, for which she holds five patents and has published dozens of technical papers.  She eventually became the Research, Development, Test and Evaluation Department Head, leading over 140 scientist and engineers performing research for Navy weapons systems.  She received both the Naval Sea Systems Command Scientist of the Year Award and the Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition Scientist of the Year Award for her research achievements. 

Most recently, Dr. Michienzi received the Secretary of Defense’s Medal for Civilian Career Service, and she previously received the Secretary of Defense’s Medal for Exceptional Civilian Service.

Dr. Michienzi received her Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from the University of Maryland, College Park (UMCP), and her Doctorate in Analytical Chemistry, also from UMCP.