Dr. Ken Plaks joined DARPA in January 2015 as a program manager. His research interests include stealth aircraft, electronic warfare, weapons research and cybersecurity.
Dr. Plaks retired from the US Air Force in 2014. He was the director for Special Programs and was the principal advisor to the Secretary of the Air Force and Chief of Staff for all aspects of Special Access Program (SAP) governance, budgeting, research, development, acquisition, production, sustainment, security classification, execution and congressional engagement. Prior to that, he commanded the USAF’s largest test squadron. He is a graduate of USAF Test Pilot School and has flown more than 40 different types of aircraft.
Dr. Plaks was the top academic graduate from the USAF Academy in 1989 with bachelor degrees in physics and mathematics. He was a Hertz Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and received a master’s in physics in 1991. After a break for military service, he finished his doctorate in physics as a Hertz Fellow at University of Nevada, Las Vegas in 2003.
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