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Daniel Poneman  

President and CEO, Centrus Energy Corporation, Deputy Secretary of Energy (2009-2014) and Senior Fellow at Harvard Kennedy School

President and CEO, Centrus Energy Corporation, Deputy Secretary of Energy (2009-2014) and Senior Fellow at Harvard Kennedy School

Daniel B. Poneman is president and chief executive officer of Centrus Energy Corp. He also serves on the company’s board of directors.

From 2009 to 2014, Poneman was the deputy Secretary of Energy, also serving as the chief operating officer of the U.S. Department of Energy. His responsibilities spanned the range of US energy policies and programs—hydrocarbons, renewables, nuclear, and efficiency—including cybersecurity, project management, national security and international cooperation. He was also responsible for the Department’s efforts on resilience and emergency response, in cases ranging from Fukushima to Hurricane Sandy. Between April 23, 2013, and May 21, 2013, Poneman served as acting Secretary of Energy.

Prior to assuming his responsibilities as deputy Secretary, Poneman served as a principal of the Scowcroft Group for eight years, providing strategic advice to corporations in a variety of strategic industries. In addition, for eight years he practiced law as a partner at Hogan & Hartson and an associate at Covington & Burling, advising clients on regulatory and policy matters.

In prior tours in government, Poneman served as a White House Fellow and as director of Defense Policy and Arms Control for the National Security Council. From 1993 through 1996, he was special assistant to the President and senior director for nonproliferation and export controls at the National Security Council. His responsibilities included the development and implementation of U.S. policy in such areas as peaceful nuclear cooperation, missile technology, space-launch activities, sanctions determinations, chemical and biological arms control efforts, and conventional arms transfer policy.

Poneman has published widely on national security issues and is the author of Nuclear Power in the Developing World and Argentina: Democracy on Trial. His third book, Going Critical: The First North Korean Nuclear Crisis (coauthored with Joel Wit and Robert Gallucci), received the 2005 Douglas Dillon “Award for Distinguished Writing on American Diplomacy”. Poneman is a senior fellow at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School, a distinguished fellow at the Paulson Institute, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Poneman received Bachelor of Arts and Juris Doctor degrees with honors from Harvard University and a Master of Letters in Politics from Oxford University.


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Speech Topics

Flirting with Disaster: Confronting Cyberthugs, Superstorms and Other Threats to Our Critical Infrastructures

From Hurricane Sandy to cyberattacks on our financial institutions, to physical assaults against electrical power substations across America, we are facing an unprecedented surge of threats to our critical infrastructures that threaten our safety, security and prosperity. Untold millions of secrets and billions of dollars have been stolen, and much greater damage could be inflicted. Learn what Americans must do to protect their life and property in the face of spiraling threats of increasing scale and sophistication.

Energy Security in a Changing World

Every U.S. President from Richard Nixon to Barack Obama deplored America’s excessive dependence on foreign oil and called for urgent action to promote energy independence. After two generations, American ingenuity and determination have now produced a prodigious outpouring of oil and natural gas that have transformed the United States into the number one hydrocarbon producer in the world. Learn what this means for the security—and prosperity—for the U.S. and its friends and allies around the world, and for our rivals and adversaries.

Winning the Future: A New American Policy to Fight Nuclear Terrorism and Climate Change

Only two threats threaten the survival of our species: nuclear destruction and climate change. We are not doing enough to stop either of these existential threats, but we know how to do much more to stop both. What is needed is a coherent approach integrating both challenges in a sustainable bipartisan consensus. The greatest generation of Americans faced commensurate challenges in the Cold War and prevailed, while presiding over the greatest economic surge in American history. Our generation can and must do the same.

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