Vice President, Strategic Initiatives @ Raytheon
Dan Darnell is vice president of Strategic Initiatives for Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems. As a Business Development leader, Darnell is responsible for strategically aligning SAS to support current and future U.S. government security and defense requirements. He works to increase SAS’ customer base and maintain relationships with civil and military leaders, understand their challenges and recommend technology solutions. Darnell brings a wealth of leadership and management experience gained during his 36-year career in the U.S. Air Force.
Before joining SAS in March 2012, Darnell was senior advisor to the Commander of the United States Pacific Command. In this role, he provided command oversight for a work force of 330,000 from all services involved in operations, defense and execution of national policy in the Pacific region.
Prior to that, Darnell was the Air Force Chief of Operations, Plans and Requirements at the Pentagon. There he planned, directed and supervised Air Force air, space, cyber and weather operations. He was responsible for training, equipping and preparing for combat more than 200,000 service members and an accompanying fleet of nearly 6,000 aircraft, 300 satellites and the nation’s nuclear ballistic missile force.
Earlier, Darnell was Director, Air Force Legislative Liaison for the Secretary of the Air Force. Before that, he commanded the only F-16 Wild Weasel Wing in Air Combat Command, led the largest and most diverse combat training wing in the Air Force, and commanded the only NATO combat fighter wing in southern Europe. He is a former commander of the Space Warfare Center and served as Senior Director of the Combined Air Operations Center at Prince Sultan Air Base, Saudi Arabia, during the opening weeks and months of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
Darnell earned a bachelor’s degree in history from the Virginia Military Institute and received his Air Force commission after completing the ROTC program as a distinguished graduate. He earned distinguished graduate honors at the Undergraduate Pilot Training school. Darnell holds a master’s degree in National Security Strategy from the National War College and is a graduate of senior executive programs at Harvard University and George Washington University. He completed his Air Force flying career as a command pilot with more than
4,600 flying hours in 12 types of fighter and training aircraft. Darnell is a former F-15 weapons school instructor and commander of the Thunderbirds, the U.S. Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron.
Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems is a leading provider of integrated sensor, communication and electronic warfare systems giving military forces
the most accurate and timely actionable information available for the network-centric battlefield. With a workforce of 13,500 and 2014 sales of $6.1 billion, SAS is headquartered in McKinney, Texas, with operations across the U.S. and internationally.
Raytheon Company, with 2014 sales of $23 billion and
61,000 employees worldwide, is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, security and civil markets throughout the world. With a history of innovation spanning 93 years, Raytheon provides state- of-the-art electronics, mission systems integration and other capabilities in the areas of sensing; effects; and command, control, communications and intelligence systems, as well as cyber security and a broad range of mission support services. Raytheon is headquartered in Waltham, Mass. For more about Raytheon, visit us at