About OUSD(C)

OUSD(C) Top Leaders

Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense (Comptroller)
Elaine A. McCusker - Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense (Comptroller)

Elaine A. McCusker

Elaine A. McCusker, was sworn in as Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense (Comptroller) on August 7, 2017. Prior to that she was a member of the Senior Executive Service as the Director, Resources and Analysis, Headquarters U.S. Central Command, MacDill Air Force Base, Fla. As the Director, she was the Senior advisor to the Commander, USCENTCOM on all matters related to warfighting analysis, campaign assessments, decision support analysis, requirements and capability gaps, budget and resourcing, and science and technology. She led programming actions and provided financial management and assessments to prepare the command for current operational requirements that support the combatant commander's strategy.

Ms. McCusker has more than ten years of federal service, including three years on Capitol Hill as a professional staff member on the Senate Armed Services Committee and five years in the Pentagon, first as a Special Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of the Navy for the Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicle Program and then as Deputy Director, Operations in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense Comptroller. She also has more than 10 years in the private sector and academic community, including six years with Argonne National Laboratory/Department of Energy and four years with the University of Washington.

Ms. McCusker has a background in science and technology, acquisition, assessments and analysis, and contingency operations as well as substantial experience in resolving complex strategic and tactical level challenges, including those with international dimensions.

EDUCATION
1989 Bachelor of Arts in political philosophy, University of Dallas, Texas

CAREER CHRONOLOGY
1. July 1994 - May 2000, Congressional/Government Affairs Liaison, Argonne National Laboratory/University of Chicago, Washington, D.C.
2. June 2000 - January 2004, Assistant Director, Federal Relations, University of Washington: Co-Chair, Coalition for National Security Research, Washington, D.C.
3. January 2004 - January 2007, Professional Staff Member, Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC), Washington, D.C.
4. January 2007 - May 2008, Special Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition, Washington, D.C.
5. May 2008 - January 2010, Associate Director, Operations, Office of the Under Secretary of Defense (Comptroller), Washington, D.C.
6. January 2010 - May 2011, Deputy Director for Operations in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense (Comptroller), Washington, D.C.
7. May 2011 – August 2017, Director, Resources and Analysis, Headquarters U.S. Central Command, MacDill Air Force Base, Fla.

AWARDS AND HONORS
2003, National Associate of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges Outstanding Achievement Award
2008, Navy Superior Civilian Service Award
2011, Office of the Secretary of Defense Exceptional Civilian Service Award
2016, Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Civilian Service Award
2017, Joint Distinguished Civilian Service Award

OTHER ACHIEVEMENTS
While serving as a professional staff member on the Senate Armed Services Committee, developed, negotiated and facilitated enactment of two major programmatic initiatives through the National Defense Authorization Act:
- Initiative for the Prevention, Mitigation and Treatment of the Blast Injuries to include increased funding and attention to treatment of traumatic brain injury and development of better force-protection equipment.
- Science, Mathematics And Research for Transformation (SMART) scholarship-for-service program designed to increase U.S. production of scientists and engineers to work in Department of Defense laboratories and facilities.