Joseph Schafer Ph.D

Leadership and Strategy Department Chair


Dr. Joseph H. Schafer joined the NDU faculty in 2016. He renewed the strategic leadership and cyberspace experiences curricula and serves as the Director of the Chief Information Officer (CIO) / Cyberspace Infrastructure Leadership Development Program (LDP). CIC faculty elected him to the Faculty Advisory Council and the FAC elected him as Chair. Dr. Schafer is also Chair of the Leadership and Strategy Department.

Earlier as a Professor at the Defense Systems Management College of the Defense Acquisition University he developed and delivered highly rated Cybersecurity and Cloud for Executives modules to the most senior industry and government acquisition executive students. He is a strategy-technology partner focused on cyber ventures and has served as CTO for a health IT startup.

His Fortune 500 executive experience includes Dell and L-3 Communications. At Dell he created strategies to enable clients to more intelligently and securely leverage Cloud and Big Data analytics. As Vice President at L-3, he won and ran the White House CIO business for the Executive Office of the President of the United States and for the Pentagon.

A career Soldier, Dr. Schafer’s final mission was reinvigorating a failing Congressional-interest software development effort supporting DoD’s $2B annual global relocation portfolio for the US Transportation Command. Prior to that he architected solutions and secured $300M for capital investments and led an international startup team of 1,000+ to deliver urgent and sustainable enterprise IT and telecommunications systems in combat for the US Central Command.
Dr. Schafer served three years in Korea and over three years in combat for Desert Storm, Afghanistan, and Iraq. In Iraq he was awarded the Combat Action Badge, Bronze Star, and Legion of Merit. He is Airborne and Air Assault qualified and an honor graduate of the US Army Ranger School.

Dr. Schafer teaches and has advised students at several universities including Georgetown, George Washington, George Mason, and the United States Military Academy at West Point.

Dr. Schafer’s education includes a BS in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (double major) from West Point, a MS in Computer Science (Artificial Intelligence & Software Engineering) and PhD in Computer Science (Usability and Cyber / Security) from the George Washington University, a MA in Strategy from the Naval War College, and an MBA from the University of Virginia, Darden Graduate School of Business.