Dr. Bob Gough has retired three times but cannot seem to make it stick. Most recently, he retired from the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) in Vienna, Austria, where, as the senior American in the On-Site Inspection Division, he planned and directed several large-scale practice inspections in places like Kazakhstan and Slovakia. The success of those realistic field activities drew largely on his previous systems engineering work at Sandia National Laboratories, where he led efforts to develop technology and procedures for verifying other countries’ compliance with nuclear, chemical, and missile arms control treaties. While at the Labs, he was asked to serve as the Department of Energy representative on U.S. delegations to the United Nations General Assembly and multilateral arms control conferences in Geneva, Switzerland, where he helped negotiate the global Chemical Weapons Convention, and the CTBT, as well as leading discussions on a possible radiological weapons ban. Before retiring from Sandia, he applied those experiences to Sandia’s strategic planning efforts, as well as to so-called “backstopping” activities of both the State and Energy Departments for various diplomatic initiatives.
Arms control verification activities—which required integration of such disparate functions as technology, diplomacy, national security policy, intelligence, and analysis—were a natural follow-on to Bob’s earlier highly varied military service. Air Force assignments included directing the specialists who analyzed data from operational tests of all-new Air Force electronic equipment, performing proprietary assessments for the Secretary of Defense of broad military investment strategies for long-term competitions with adversaries, strategic weapon system development, civic action duties during combat operations in Southeast Asia, and teaching at the U.S. Air Force Academy. During two tours on the faculty at USAFA, Dr. Gough designed and taught courses in decision theory, statistics, operations research, systems theory, and economics, as well as directing the largest academic major chosen by cadets—Management. Bob has also taught both graduate and undergraduate courses as an adjunct professor at numerous universities across the U.S., including the University of New Mexico’s Anderson School.
His academic education includes a BS in Chemical Engineering from Lehigh University, an MBA from the University of Chicago, and an MS in Engineering-Economic Systems and PhD from Stanford University, where his research was awarded the top prize in the Decision Sciences Institute’s national dissertation competition. Other professional service and honors have included national and regional boards of DSI, the Military Operations Research Society, and several academic honor societies.
Although retired from full-time employment, Bob has had consultancies with the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization in Vienna and Kazakhstan, Sandia National Laboratories, and the Office for Policy, Security, and Technology at the University of New Mexico. For the latter, he helped formulate and conduct research on strategic defense technology management, arranged discussions with numerous former senior government officials, and tailored materials for both the final report and briefings.
Bob has served on several community service boards, including that of Albuquerque’s Committee on Foreign Relations (now World Affairs Council), which he also served as Executive Director before moving to Vienna, the national Board of the American Committees on Foreign Relations, Albuquerque’s Youth Symphony Program, and his homeowners association. He has also served in virtually all elected offices of his church, chaired its three Building Committees and its Strategic Planning Committee, as well as its “safety net” endowment-like Foundation, and was asked to chair the Diocese’s Strategic Planning Committee. He has also been elected to the Board and Executive Committee of Albuquerque’s Jewish Committee Center, having also served as its Treasurer and Finance Committee Chair.
When not involved with his son and grandkids, or trying to play some golf, Bob and his wife Jean love to travel, and to enjoy and support the New Mexico Philharmonic.