Our Team

Whitney McNamara

Whitney McNamara Joined BGS in February 2022

Ms. McNamara is currently a Non-Resident Senior Fellow at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments. She also supports the Atlantic Council’s Commission on Defense Innovation Adoption where she is the lead author on assessing critical technologies and their barriers to adoption in the Department of Defense.

Prior to joining BGS, Mrs. McNamara worked in the Office of the Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (OSD R&E) where she served as the S&T portfolio lead at the Defense Innovation Board (DIB), whose mission is to provide the Secretary of Defense, Deputy Secretary of Defense, and other senior leaders with recommendations on emerging technologies and innovative approaches that DoD should adopt to ensure U.S. technological and military dominance. Before that, she was an emerging technologies policy subject matter expert supporting the Department of Defense’s Chief Information Office (CIO). Prior to that, she was a Senior Analyst at the national security think tank, the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, focusing on emerging technologies, future operating concepts, and informationized warfare in the context of long term technological and military competition with great powers.

Mrs. McNamara is a former National Security Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson Center and interned in the Political-Military Bureau at the Department of State and in the Office of the Secretary of Defense for Middle East Policy.  Prior to that, she spent four years working in the Middle East as a project manager, consultant and journalist.  She has written for or been quoted in the Washington Post, Cipher Brief, Real Clear Defense, Breaking Defense, C4ISRNET, Air Force Magazine, The Center for International Maritime Security, Aspen Review, The National Interest, Al-Monitor, and Al Arabiya.

She received her M.A. in Strategic Studies and International Economics from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies where she was a Bradley Fellow and a Presidential Management Fellowship Finalist and her B.A. from the University of Pittsburgh.