Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Jim Woolsey

Defense Acquisition University


Jim Woolsey currently serves as the President of Defense Acquisition University (DAU), a position he has held since January 2014.

In this role, Mr. Woolsey leads one of the largest corporate universities in the world—responsible for the training and talent development of roughly 186,000 Department of Defense (DOD) employees. DAU’s students represent a cross-section of the Department’s Acquisition functions, including contracting, business, engineering, logistics, and program management. For the past several years, Mr. Woolsey has led DAU’s transformation to a modern learning platform that employs the full range of training modes and that empowers the workforce to tailor learning to their current job needs and future career goals.

He previously served as the first Deputy Director for Performance Assessments (PA) in the office of Performance Assessments and Root Cause Analyses (PARCA). In standing up the PA organization, he created the processes and practices required for a small staff to quantitatively assess the progress of all Major Defense Acquisition Programs. These analyses produced improved portfolio visibility for the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, and were also used to investigate specific areas of interest as programs moved through the acquisition life cycle.

Mr. Woolsey was previously an Assistant Director in the Cost Analysis and Research Division of the Institute for Defense Analyses. His responsibilities included management of the division’s cost analysis and research, and leadership of a wide range of cost and acquisition studies. His work included a congressionally-directed cost benefit analysis of the F-35 alternate engine, an evaluation of KC-767A lease prices, C-5 re-engineering costs and benefits, F-22 production readiness, Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile costs, and space launch alternatives. Mr. Woolsey also served on a Defense Science Board Task Force on long-range strike.

Mr. Woolsey’s other previous positions include service as a structures engineer for F/A-18 aircraft at Naval Air Systems Command, and work as an engineer for Lockheed Martin airlift programs in Marietta, GA.

Mr. Woolsey has a Bachelor of Science in aerospace engineering from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, a Master of Business Administration from George Mason University and was a Fellow in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Seminar XXI on International Relations