Rebecca Zimmerman: A Journey in Defense Policy and Homeland Security – A Biography

About Rebecca Zimmerman Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Homeland Defense Integration & Defense Support of Civil Authorities

Name
Rebecca Zimmerman
Current Position
Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense
for Homeland Defense Integration and Defense Support
of Civil Authorities
Responsibilities
– Development of homeland defense, defense support
of civil authorities, and chemical, biological and
nuclear preparedness policy
– Overseeing implementation of policy, plans, and
programs addressing security challenges
– Managing DoD’s response to national emergencies
in support of lead federal agencies
Previous Position
Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Afghanistan,
Pakistan, and Central Asia
Experience
– Researcher and policy advisor for two decades
– Worked at RAND Corporation, Editor-in-Chief of War
on the Rocks, and in the private sector
– Seconded to multiple deployed operational commands
– Served on study task forces reporting to Chairman
of Joint Chiefs of Staff
– RAND’s liaison to Army Operations
Published Studies
– U.S. military inter-service competition
– Organizational aspects of competition with China
and Russia
– Soldier attitudes and attrition
– Afghanistan policy
Education
– B.A. in international relations with honors from
Stanford University
– M.A. in strategic studies from the Johns Hopkins
University, School of Advanced International
Studies

Rebecca Zimmerman Biography

Ms. Zimmerman currently holds the position of Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Homeland Defense Integration and Defense Support of Civil Authorities.

In her current role, she is responsible for developing policies related to homeland defense, defense support for civil authorities, and preparedness for chemical, biological, and nuclear incidents.

Her responsibilities also include overseeing the implementation of policies, plans, and programs that address the emerging security challenges that the nation faces. Ms. Zimmerman works closely with federal, state, and local leadership, as well as with law enforcement, public health, and emergency management sectors.

She plays a key role in coordinating the Department of Defense’s response to national emergencies in collaboration with lead federal agencies.

Before her current appointment, Ms. Zimmerman served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Central Asia starting from February 16, 2021. With a background spanning two decades, she has worked as a researcher and policy advisor in various capacities, including at the RAND Corporation, where she also served as the Editor-in-Chief of War on the Rocks. Additionally, she has gained experience in the private sector.

Throughout her career, Ms. Zimmerman has been assigned to multiple operational commands during deployments, contributed to study task forces reporting to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and served as RAND’s liaison to Army Operations.

She has authored numerous studies covering topics such as U.S. military inter-service competition, organizational aspects of competition with China and Russia, soldier attitudes and attrition, and Afghanistan policy.

Educationally, Ms. Zimmerman earned a B.A. in international relations with honors from Stanford University. She further pursued her studies and completed an M.A. in strategic studies from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies.

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