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RichardFinalRich Ashooh is a seasoned executive with more than 30 years of experience in the corporate, government, and academic sectors. He was senior leader for one of the nation’s foremost defense technology companies, has served as professional staff to the U.S. Senate Committee on Government Affairs, and has been a trustee to two universities and a major regional hospital. On May 25, 2017 he was nominated to be Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Export Administration. 

For much of his career, Rich was a senior executive at BAE Systems, a global aerospace company, and Lockheed Martin.  His service began 25 years ago with Lockheed, with the electronics group of the company known as Sanders.  During this time, Rich contributed to the growth of that business from an $800 million company to a nearly $5 billion enterprise and the world leader in electronic warfare, as well as a leading player in ISR, SIGINT, and other critical technologies in national and homeland security. Rich was instrumental in the success of numerous programs which serve our warfighters, including many classified initiatives.  Rich also led the company’s homeland security efforts after 9/11, focusing the company’s technology solutions toward a new range of threats to our nation.  In his strategy role with the company, Rich enabled the growth of the company’s commercial lines of business as well. He is proud to have contributed to the success of dozens of programs that have protected the lives of countless US and allied military servicemen and women.
   
Rich’s professional career began in the US Senate, serving for several years as a Professional Staff Member on the US Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs under U.S. Senator Warren Rudman, where his primary focus was on federal procurement policies and oversight. Rich also inherited Senator Rudman’s passion for fiscal responsibility, and continues to be personally active in the effort to restore fiscal soundness to the federal budget, control spending, reduce the debt, and grow the economy.

Ashooh has been a leader in the defense industry. Rich recently chaired the Professional Services Council’s (formerly TechAmerica) Defense Vision Forecast, the highly regarded industry collaborative that helps determine US military and federal civil budgets. In his tenure, Rich worked with senior DOD officials to establish the first C4ISR forecast at a time when defense spending in this area was at a critical point.
 
Rich is a leader in the higher education community, having served on the Board of Trustees for the University System of New Hampshire, Franklin Pierce University in Rindge, as well as the UNH Foundation board. He currently serves as the Director of Economic Partnerships for the University System of New Hampshire, with over 33,000 enrolled students and the largest provider of post-secondary education in the state.  Prior to this he was Interim Executive Director of the Warren B. Rudman Center for Justice, Leadership and Public Policy at the University of New Hampshire School of Law, a nationally ranked leader in intellectual property law.  
Rich has served on the board of New England Council, the nation’s oldest regional business advocacy group, and has been actively involved with the National Defense Industrial Association, National Association of Manufacturers, and the US Chamber. A common thread to all his endeavors has been to encourage economic growth through American excellence in technology and innovation.

Long involved in politics, he has been active in numerous campaigns as well as New Hampshire’s First in the Nation Primary. His commitment to making our nation a better place led Rich to run for Congress in New Hampshire’s First District in 2016. Despite challenging an incumbent, the voters resonated with his positive message, earning the endorsement of every major newspaper and missing the nomination by less than 1%.
 
Rich was born in Manchester, New Hampshire, the grandson of Lebanese immigrants, and is married to the former Lori Johnson of Peterborough, whom he met while both were at the University of New Hampshire on the UNH Rowing Team.  He and Lori have five children:  Sofie 23, Emma 21, Elias 19, Maya 18, and Sam 16.