Board of Directors

Board Chairman – Lieutenant General Ronald L. Watts, U.S. Army (Ret.), Watts Leadership Development Services, President

Lieutenant General Ron Watts served over 33 years on active duty with the U.S. Army in airborne, infantry, and armored forces as an infantry officer. General Watts commanded at every level in combat units from company to corps level. He completed two tours in Vietnam. Upon retirement from the U.S. Army, General Watts created Watts Leadership Development Services.


Dr. Marc J. Bendickson, Dynetics, Inc., Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Bendickson has over 40 years of experience in missile weapon systems, seekers, radar systems, and related technology, as well as more than 35 years in supervisory and management positions. As Dynetics’ Chief Executive Officer, he is responsible for the performance of over 1300 employees in 7 locations across the U.S. who generate sales of approximately $270M.


Mr. Tim Paulson, Independent Consultant

Mr. Paulson has extensive financial management experience, including 6 years of P&L responsibility as Chief Financial Officer of a business operating unit and 7 years as Corporate Treasurer of a $5B Fortune 500 Company providing aerospace, defense, and electronics technology to government and commercial customers.


Mr. Charles L. Beames, York Space Systems, Executive Chairman

Mr. Beames is currently the Executive Chairman of York Space Systems, a leader in commercial satellite design and manufacturing.  Previously, he served as President, Vulcan Aerospace and Executive Director, Stratolaunch Systems. Beames brings to the Areté Board broad executive experience across the space and military industry, including legislative affairs and private equity investment.


Mr. Jeffrey M. Smith, Riptide Autonomous Solutions, President

Mr. Smith is currently the President of Riptide Autonomous Solutions, a leader in Unmanned Undersea Vehicle (UUV) design and manufacturing. Previously, he led the business growth strategy, capture management, partnering initiatives, and product expansion at Bluefin Robotics, now General Dynamics Mission Systems. Smith brings to the board over 25 years of experience working product development for the DoD from large companies to small startups demonstrating the ability to standup rapid prototyping and production lines.


Mr. David Campion, Areté Associates, Chief Executive Officer

Mr. David Campion leads the company as the CEO and President. Prior to this, he served as the Chief Operating Officer where he oversaw the growth and development of Arete’s business areas and technical staff. He has an M.S. in Optical Engineering from the University of California, San Diego, and he has over 20 years’ experience in leading remote sensing, image processing, and application development projects.

Mr. Guy Farruggia, Areté Associates, Maritime Sensing Solutions (MSS) Business Area

Joining Areté Associates in 1996, Mr. Farruggia has over 33 years of experience serving numerous Department of Defense and commercial customers. His current portfolio includes customers from the Navy, DARPA and IARPA. His background is in the development of in-situ and remote maritime sensor technologies, engineered ocean and remote sensing systems.