Kristen R. Hajduk is a Special Advisor for Special Operations and Unconventional Warfare and an adjunct fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. She provides technical oversight and guidance to U.S. Special Operations Command, advocates for Special Operations policies within the Department of Defense, interagency, and the Legislative Branch. Previously she served as special assistant to the Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, advising on all issues relating to special operations, strategy, force development, and planning. Prior to this, she was the special advisor to the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Low-Intensity Conflict, consulting on executive management and strategic-level issues concerning the 80+ person organization. From 2008 to 2016, Kristen conducted research at the Institute for Defense Analyses where her areas of expertise included nuclear policy, strategic wargaming, operational analyses, continuity of government policies, NATO strategic
planning, and defense talent management policies. From 2008 to 2010, she worked for the Homeland Security Studies and Analyses Institute, where she provided on-site support for the Department of Homeland Security’s first-ever Quadrennial Homeland Security Review. Kristen is a Center for New American Security Next Generation National Security Leader alum and a German Marshal Fund Fellow.
Kristen received her Master of Public Policy degree in National Security Policy from the University of Chicago. During this time, she interned for the Chicago Policy Review and the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. Kristen holds a Bachelor’s degree (Hons) with dual majors of International Relations and English Literature from Ohio Wesleyan University. While there, she interned at the Geneva Center for Security Policy and the National Defense University. She is a volunteer for the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.