Samantha Arnett

Senior Fellow

Areas of Expertise:  Countering WMD; WMD Terrorism

Dr. Sam Arnett is a Senior Fellow at the Center for the Study of Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) at the National Defense University in Washington, D.C.  In addition to countering WMD and WMD terrorism, Arnett’s areas of emphasis include chemical and biological weapons, chemical weapons deterrence, WMD intelligence, special operations, and strategic communications.  Prior to joining the Center, Arnett was an Army civilian and the Science Advisor for a U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) Special Mission Unit where she enabled all aspects of WMD-focused operational planning and execution.  From 2017 to 2019, Arnett was detailed from USSOCOM to the National Security Council staff where she served as the Director for WMD Terrorism Threats and State Chemical Weapons Issues overseeing and coordinating the development of national policies and programs to prevent, deter, and respond to non-state actor chemical, biological, nuclear, and radiological threats and state chemical weapons issues.  Arnett previously served in various management and field-focused roles in the Department of State’s Office of Cooperative Threat Reduction in the Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation developing and overseeing the implementation of programs to reduce the threat posed by terrorists and proliferant states seeking biological, chemical, and nuclear weapons and related expertise and material.  Arnett began her government career as an American Association for the Advancement of Science Diplomacy, Security, and Development Policy Fellow, and was awarded the Secretary of Defense Medal for Exceptional Civilian Service for her work on the National Security Council staff.  Arnett holds a M.S. and Ph.D. in Bio-organic Chemistry from The Johns Hopkins University and a B.S. in Chemistry from Vanderbilt University.