ONR Taps Notre Dame Engineering Alum for Top Spot

Author: Nina Welding

Rear Adm. Mathias W. Winter, who received a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Notre Dame in 1984, has been sworn in as the chief of naval research (CNR) at the Office of Naval Research (ONR), the organization that leads Navy and Marine Corps research efforts around the world. He officially took the helm of the ONR on December 30, 2014, relieving Rear Adm. Matthew L. Klunder, who is retiring from the Navy after 32 years of naval service and three years as CNR.

Rear Adm

A decorated aviator with advanced degrees in both computer science and national resource strategy, Winter oversees the approximately $2 billion Department of the Navy budget for naval science and technology programs. He also serves as director of Innovation Technology Requirements and Test and Evaluation.

“I’m honored to be given this unique command opportunity as I build upon Rear Adm. Klunder’s successes in bringing together the brightest minds across the Department of the Navy, academia and industry to solve our toughest technological challenges,” he said.

Prior to joining the ONR Winter served as commander, Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division; assistant commander for test and evaluation, Naval Air Systems Command; and Program Executive Officer (PEO) for Unmanned Aviation and Strike Weapons. Highlights of his naval career include flying operational missions as an A6E Intruder bombardier/navigator, chief of staff to the PEO for tactical aircraft performance and major program manager of the DoN’s Precision Strike Weapons portfolio.

A native of Shippensburg, Penn., Winter holds a master’s degree from the Naval Postgraduate School and the National Defense University’s Industrial College of the Armed Forces.

As do many Notre Dame graduates, Winter attributes the foundations of his success while he also plans for the future: “Today’s challenges require bold innovative leaders to push the boundaries of traditional thinking to find the game-changing solutions for tomorrow. I can state without hesitation that my engineering education under our beloved Golden Dome provided me the knowledge, relationships and moral character development that has enabled my successful military service path for three decades. Now as the Navy’s Chief Scientist, I look forward to strengthening our ties between the Navy and Notre Dame as we work together to explore, discover and deliver the next generation of breakthrough technologies for our academic and S&T communities to ensure a stronger military and brighter America. Go Irish!”