As director of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), Regina Dugan oversaw the US armed forces' innovation engine. Now she deploys the same research tactics at Google.
Businesswoman and technology developer Regina Dugan achieved national prominence when she became the first woman in charge of Darpa, the Pentagon's research arm. Dugan earned a reputation as a motivator and creative thinker, spurring non-traditional projects like a nationwide contest to find hidden balloons in order to test the power of social networks for intelligence gathering.
In a previous stint at the agency, Dugan investigated mine-detection technology, and her work wasn't limited to the lab. In Mozambique she drove a mine-clearing vehicle during a live detection exercise. Dugan currently is senior vice president at Motorola, where her mission is to advance the company's technology, which one day may include password tattoos. Ask her and she may show you hers.
“Since we took to the sky, we have wanted to fly faster and farther. And to do so, we've had to believe in impossible things and we've had to refuse to fear failure.”
“If you don't already have a nerd in your life, you should get one.”
“The path to truly new, never-been-done-before things always has failure along the way.”
“At Mach 20, we can fly from New York to Long Beach in 11 minutes and 20 seconds.”
“[We're making materials] so light that you can make a car that two people can lift, but so strong that it has the crash-worthiness of an SUV.”
“Scientists and engineers can indeed change the world. So can you. You were born to.”
“We think someone else, someone smarter than us, someone more capable, someone with more resources will solve that problem. But there isn't anyone else.”
“It would be inconceivable for us to do [our] work if we didn't make people excited and uncomfortable with the things that we do at the same time.”— on DARPA