ISSP Leadership Forum


The ISSP leadership forum is a unique and impactful opportunity for Fletcher students to engage in sequential, small group dialogue with senior civilian policy and military leaders operating at the highest levels of command and decision making. ISSP will host 20 graduate students, military fellows, and senior leaders in an intimate “fire-side chat” format in which students are encouraged to dialogue and learn from these senior leaders’ experiences and personal stories about leadership in military command, embassies, intelligence agencies, and the defense industry.

In our third year (2023) of the ISSP Leadership Forum, we invited four senior executive women leaders from the U.S. Intelligence Community to share their trailblazing leadership experiences as the first women to lead in their positions. Our guests included: 1) Letitia Long, Director of one of the five major intelligence agencies, the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency; 2) Elizabeth Kimber, CIA’s Director of Operations; 3) Cynthia Rapp, Director of Analysis and Chief of Staff of the CIA; and 4) Dawn Meyerriecks, CIA’s Director of Science and Technology and its first director to lead a restructuring of the S&T division in its 57-year history. 

In 2022, ISSP invited senior leaders to discuss “Leadership in War.” Ambassador Robert Ford (Syria, Iraq, Algeria), General Stan McCrystal (Joint Special Operations Command), General Joseph Dunford (International Assistance Force Afghanistan) , General Mike Scaparrotti and Command Sergeant Major John Troxell (U.S. Forces Korea, I Corps, and Afghanistan), and Lieutenant General Joseph Guastella (U.S. Air Forces Central Command Qatar) each shared their experiences preparing for and then leading units and embassies in conflict zones.

In 2024, ISSP will convene its fourth ISSP Leadership Forum centered on the theme “Technology in National Security.” We will invite senior defense and retired military leaders along with other prominent public and private sector leaders in the fields of technology, intelligence, cyber security, and defense policy who have furthered technological change in the greater national security enterprise.