The Office of the National Cyber Director (ONCD) has hired Daniel Ragsdale to serve as its deputy assistant director for workforce and education to help spearhead implementation of the White House’s brand-new National Cyber Workforce and Education Strategy (NCWES).

Ragsdale – a 40-year Department of Defense (DoD) veteran – will assume his new position on August 14, where he will focus on cyber workforce and education.

Ragsdale is joining the White House after a two-year stint at Two Six Technologies, where he initially served as VP for research and development, and later as VP for DoD Strategy.

“Over the past four decades I have had the good fortune to serve in a wide variety of leadership roles as a career Army officer, a DOD civilian, and in the private sector at Two Six Technologies,” Ragsdale said in a statement. “I absolutely resonate with Two Six’s ‘people first, mission-focused’ mantra, and I’m proud to have been part of the company’s rapid growth over the past two years.”

Prior to working at Two Six Technologies, Ragsdale served as the DoD’s acting director of defense research and engineering for modernization, where he was responsible for driving DoD-wide innovation by facilitating development and use of advanced technologies for the joint force.

Before that, he served as the principal director for cyber – responsible for coordinating cyber modernization efforts across the DoD.

Some of Ragsdale’s earlier positions include program manager for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), where he oversaw a $175M portfolio for cybersecurity, cyber operations, and behavioral science research and development (R&D). He also spent 30 years in the U.S. Army.

Ragsdale also was the founding director for the Cybersecurity Center at Texas A&M.

Chris Inglis, ONCD’s inaugural director, said in a statement, “Dan is a national treasure whose innumerable contributions to the cybersecurity profession over the course of three decades have inspired my work and thousands of others fortunate to have been mentored by him. His skills, experience, and leadership abilities will be an invaluable resource for the ONCD mission, in particular for the Technology and Ecosystem Line of Effort.”

The Biden-Harris administration released its NCWES last week as a first-of-its-kind comprehensive approach aimed at addressing both immediate and long-term cyber workforce needs. The strategy’s main goal is to increase the number of Americans in “good-paying, middle-class” cyber jobs.

Ragsdale posted on LinkedIn that the NCWES is a “well-conceived and comprehensive strategy” that “directly addresses, in clearly consequential ways, the many long-standing challenges we have faced in attracting, recruiting, retaining, and developing our cyber workforce. This strategy will be the firm foundation upon which the equally important implementation plans will be built.”

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Cate Burgan
Cate Burgan
Cate Burgan is a MeriTalk Senior Technology Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.