Paul Stockton helps private sector and government leaders meet emerging challenges in infrastructure resilience, cybersecurity, and strategic planning. Dr. Stockton’s innovative approach to anticipating and resolving such challenges reflects his own leadership expertise and analytic achievements, and passion for tackling the most difficult and consequential security problems confronting our nation.
about current work
Dr. Stockton’s service as Assistant Secretary of Defense for Homeland Defense for President Barack Obama put him on his current path of support to industry and government. As ASD, he was responsible for assuring the Defense Department could perform its critical missions, even if adversaries launched cyberattacks to disrupt the flow of electricity on which military bases and operations depend. To build resilience against such threats, he developed unprecedented partnerships with electric utilities, regulators, and the Department of Energy (DOE). Dr. Stockton also led the Department’s response to Superstorm Sandy and other natural catastrophes that sparked cascading failures across infrastructure sectors. As he left office, Dr. Stockton decided that building resilience to increasingly severe natural and manmade threats should become his life’s work. After leaving the Pentagon in 2013, Dr. Stockton served as Managing Director of Sonecon, LLC, a security and economic advisory firm in Washington, D.C. He now leads Paul N Stockton LLC and lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
WHAT MAKES HIM DIFFERENT
Dr. Stockton’s service as ASD also laid the foundations for his ongoing work to strengthen international collaboration with key US security partners. As Acting US co-chair of the US-Canada Permanent Joint Board of Defense, Dr. Stockton helped reshape the focus of binational cooperation on emerging threats. He also deepened security collaboration with Mexico, Chile, Brazil, and other Western Hemisphere Nations.
Providing strategic advice to major electric utilities, trade associations and the Electricity Subsector Coordinating Council, Dr. Stockton helps entities strengthen preparedness against emerging cyber threats. He chairs the Grid Resilience for National Security subcommittee of DOE’s Electricity Advisory Committee. Dr. Stockton serves on the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) Task Force on Emergency Preparedness, Recovery, and Resilience. He also provides pro bono analytic support to the Defense Department, including for Defense Science Board studies of infrastructure resilience and cyber deterrence.
Preparing for response operations against catastrophic, “Black Sky” events is an additional focus Dr. Stockton’s career. While serving as Associate Provost of the Naval Postgraduate School, he founded and led its Center for Homeland Defense and Security to grow the next generation of leadership for emergency management. He helped FEMA draft the 4th Edition of the National Response Framework as well as Emergency Support Function #14, Cross-Sector Business and Infrastructure. He continues to assist public and private sector organizations strengthen their preparedness for incident response operations against all hazards.
Reach out for public speaking opportunities
Dr. Stockton has testified to Congress on multiple occasions and has been featured on 60 Minutes concerning insider threats to critical facilities. Since leaving office, Dr. Stockton has provided testimony on infrastructure resilience to the Canadian Parliament and published studies on new grid security initiatives with Mexico and Canada, Blackstart power restoration, and other projects. Dr. Stockton gives frequent presentations to corporate leadership teams and associations.
DEFENSE AGAINST INFORMATION WARFARE
Dr. Stockton is now bringing his analytic skills to bear on a new challenge: the risk that in an intense regional crisis with China or Russia, those nations will conduct coercive information operations against the US public and senior officials, designed to convince them that the costs of defending America’s allies dwarf the benefits of doing so. Johns Hopkins University’s Applied Physics Laboratory publishes in July 2021 his study on how to strengthen US defenses against such operations, and against combined information-cyberattacks that adversaries may use to create even stronger coercive pressure on US crisis decision-makers.