Richard L. Dunn provides advice and engages in research and analysis related to the deployment and implementation of technology in the military and civil sectors through partnering and other innovative means; he conducts research in national security operations, technology and their interactions; and, analyzes laws, policies and practices that impact the effective implementation of technology. He is founder and consultant at Strategic Institute for Innovation in Government Contracting. He served as Expert-Consultant at National Defense University, 2016–2017. Pro bono work has included appointment to several study groups of the National Academy of Science and Defense Science Board. He serves as a trustee of the Chesapeake Environmental Protection Association.
2000-2007: Senior Fellow/Visiting Scholar at the University of Maryland. This appointment was in the Department of Logistics, Business and Public Policy, R.H. Smith School of Business. Scholarly research was the primary emphasis of this position as well as teaching and related activities. Research included an eclectic mix of implementation of technology and historical national security studies.
1987-2000: Appointed as the first General Counsel of DARPA. He organized the office and provided a full range of legal services for the nation’s foremost national security research and development agency. Mr. Dunn pioneered innovative techniques to support science and technology projects by championing the enactment of legislation that authorized DARPA to enter into cooperative relationships with commercial companies or “partnerships” of companies and other organizations. Other pioneering efforts involved obtaining authority to conduct prototype projects outside the normal contracting statutes, Other Transactions, and special authority to recruit and pay scientists and engineers without regard to Civil Service laws. Additionally, he championed and obtained authority to award incentive prizes to spur technology developments. All these authorities are in use and have served as models for other agencies. Awards include the Presidential Rank of Meritorious Executive and the Secretary of Defense Medal for Meritorious Civilian Service.
1980-1987: Served in several positions at NASA including Counsel to the Space Commercialization Task Force and Deputy Associate General Counsel. He worked at NASA Headquarters where his areas of responsibility included personnel law, information and privacy law, real estate and facilities, fiscal law and legislation, and a variety of other matters.