Philip Coyle recently stepped down from the position of Assistant Secretary of Defense and Director, Operational Test and Evaluation, in the Department of Defense. He was confirmed by the Senate on September 29, 1994, and is the longest serving Director in the 17 year history of the Office. In this capacity, he was the principal advisor to the Secretary of Defense and the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics on test and evaluation in the DoD. Mr. Coyle was also the principal OSD official for operational and live fire testing within the senior management of the DoD.
Mr. Coyle's responsibilities included stewardship of the Major Range and Test Facility Bases of the DOD, including the large test ranges and test centers which the DOD operates from Maryland and Florida to California and Hawaii.
As Director, Operational Test and Evaluation, Mr. Coyle had responsibility for overseeing the test and evaluation of over 200 major defense acquisition systems. This included reporting to the Secretary of Defense, and to Congress, on the adequacy of the DOD testing programs, and on the results from those testing programs. Mr Coyle was called upon regularly to testify before Congress and to brief Congressional staff on the status of major defense acquisition programs. His work was followed closely by the four Defense Committees of the Congress and was frequently praised in the press. His integrity and objectivity has been recognized widely.
Mr. Coyle has 30 years experience in testing and test-related matters. From 1959 to 1979, and again from 1981 to 1993, Mr. Coyle worked at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in Livermore, California. During the more recent period he served as an Associate Director of the Laboratory. First--from 1981 to 1984--he was Associate Director for Test. Later, from 1987 to 1993, he served as Laboratory Associate Director and a Deputy to the Laboratory Director. In November 1993, Mr. Coyle retired from the Laboratory. In recognition of his 33 years service to the Laboratory and to the University of California, University President Jack Peltason named Mr. Coyle Laboratory Associate Director Emeritus.
During the Carter Administration, Mr. Coyle served as Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Defense Programs in the Department of Energy (DOE). In this capacity he had oversight responsibility for the nuclear weapons testing programs of the Department.
Earlier in his career while at Lawrence Livermore, Mr. Coyle was directly responsible for many of the testing programs of the DOE and its predecessor agencies. He served as a Scientific Advisor on testing matters to the Nevada Operations Office. For many years he was a Test Director at the Nevada Test Site and at other testing locations. In 1971 he was the Test Director of the full-scale underground test of the Spartan warhead on Amchitka Island in the Aleutians. In the mid-1970s, Mr. Coyle also served as a Deputy in the Laboratory's laser program, developing high power lasers for fusion, isotope separation, and other applications.
Mr. Coyle has been active in community and educational programs. In 1991 he was named as a Commissioner of the East Bay Conversion and Reinvestment Commission which developed defense conversion plans for Alameda Naval Air Station and the East Bay. He was a member of the Board of the Alameda County Economic Development Advisory Board. He also served on the boards of several educational organizations.
During his last 6 years at the Laboratory, Mr. Coyle also held the position of Equal Opportunity Officer. This included responsibility for affirmative action and diversity programs. Mr. Coyle helped the Laboratory achieve substantial gains in diversity employment. Because of this work, the Laboratory received an Exemplary Voluntary Effort (EVE) Award from the Department of Labor. Mr. Coyle received personal commendation from the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs, and upon his retirement, the Laboratory established a new award for excellence in diversity in his name.
Last September, the International Test and Evaluation Association awarded Mr. Coyle the Allan R. Matthews Award, its highest award, for his contributions to the management and technology of test and evaluation.
Mr. Coyle was awarded the Defense Distinguished Service Medal by Secretary Perry, and the Bronze Palm of the Defense Distinguished Service Medal by Secretary Cohen.
Mr. Coyle graduated from Dartmouth College with an MS in Mechanical Engineering (1957) and a BA (1956). His wife, Dr. Martha Krebs, is the founding Director of the new California NanoSystems Institute, a research partnership between UCLA and U.C. Santa Barbara. They have four grown children and three grandchildren, and live in Washington, DC.
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