John S. Thackrah

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John S. Thackrah

John S. Thackrah was United States Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Development and Acquisitions) in 2007-2008.


John S. Thackrah was educated at the University of Delaware (bachelor's degree in Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering) and at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (M.B.A.).

In 1979, Thackrah joined United Technologies Corporation's Pratt & Whitney Division, where he worked in project and test engineering. He later worked in program management and model management and commercial flight test activities. He then became president of a Pratt & Whitney joint venture. He later went on to serve in a series of executive positions, culminating in Vice President of all Commercial Products. He then became Vice President of UTC's Otis Elevator Company division, later returning to Pratt & Whitney as Vice President of Aftermarket Services, and later serving as vice president / general manager of one of its strategic business units.

On April 18, 2005, Thackrah was sworn in as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Management and Budget of the United States Department of the Navy. In this capacity, he was responsible for all the department's administrative matters, annual budget preparation, and human resource management, and served as chief of staff for the Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Development and Acquisitions), John J. Young, Jr. and then Delores M. Etter.

In 2007, President of the United States George W. Bush nominated Thackrah as Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Development and Acquisitions) and he subsequently held this office from November 16, 2007 until July 27, 2008. In that capacity, he was responsible for $50 billion annually of research, development and acquisition activities and over 100,000 people.

On December 8, 2008, he became Principal Deputy of the Navy's Strategic Systems Programs.


Government offices
Preceded by
Delores M. Etter
Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Development and Acquisitions)
November 16, 2007 – July 27, 2008
Succeeded by
Sean Stackley