Mr. Verga is the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, Chief of Staff to the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy and serves as the first assistant to the Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense. He is responsible for oversight of security cooperation policy implementation, technology security policy, detainee policy, and missing persons and prisoners of war issues. Mr. Verga also oversees the management and day-to-day operations of the Policy organization and is responsible for ensuring the integration and implementation of national security and defense policies. Additionally, Mr. Verga is the Special Assistant to the Secretary and Deputy Secretary of Defense for Compartmented Activities.
Prior to his current appointment, Mr. Verga served as the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Homeland Defense and Americas’ Security Affairs, acting as the principal advisor on matters related to homeland defense activities of the Department of Defense and regional security matters for the Western Hemisphere, including Defense participation in homeland security interagency activities. He is a member of the Federal Emergency Management Agency National Advisory Council. Mr. Verga also served as the Special Assistant for Homeland Security and Director of the Department of Defense Homeland Security Task Force; as the Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Integration, successfully negotiating the return of a U.S. EP-3 Aircraft in 2001; and as Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Support.
Born in Winston-Salem, North Carolina in 1947, Mr. Verga holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Administration from the University of La Verne, La Verne California, and a Master of Science degree in Public Administration from Troy State University, Troy, Alabama. A graduate of the United States Army Command and General Staff College, he is a visiting professor at the Naval Postgraduate School. Mr. Verga has been a career member of the Senior Executive Service since 1998.
Mr. Verga is a retired U. S. Army officer with over twenty-six years of service, including combat operations in Vietnam from September, 1969 to November, 1971. Prior to retirement from active service, he served as the Deputy Director for Emergency Planning in the Office of the Secretary of Defense where he was responsible for a variety of special and sensitive activities and interagency matters regarding emergency preparedness and wartime continuity of government policy and on the White House staff as Special Assistant to the Assistant to the President for Management and Administration, advising on a variety of matters including continuity of government and sensitive emergency plans and programs in direct support of the President. This followed duty as Deputy Director of the Office of Emergency Operations of the White House Military Office and in the Operations Directorate of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
Mr. Verga has been awarded the Presidential Rank of Meritorious Executive and has been awarded three Defense Distinguished Civilian Service Awards and the Defense Meritorious Civilian Service Award. During his military service his awards included, among others; the Combat Infantryman’s Badge, the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, four Bronze Star medals, the Purple Heart, three Defense Meritorious Service Medals, twenty-one Air Medals, and the Presidential Service Badge.
Mr. Verga is married to the former Elizabeth Anne McAneny, they currently reside in Alexandria, Virginia.