Rear Admiral Samuel Perez Jr. is the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Plans, Programs, and Operations in the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Political-Military Affairs. Perez oversees the Bureau’s Offices of Plans, Policy and Analysis; Weapons Removal and Abatement; and International Security Operations. In this capacity, he is responsible for providing executive leadership and guidance for U.S. government global security assistance programs and policies, such as Foreign Military Financing and the Global Peace Operations Initiative. Perez also oversees the Department of State’s conventional weapons destruction efforts, handles State-DoD coordination on significant military exercises, and helps to manage State-Defense personnel exchange matters.
A native of El Paso, Texas, Perez is a 1980 graduate of the United States Naval Academy. At sea, he served aboard the USS Paul F. Foster (DD 964); USS Knox (FF 1052), and USS Bunker Hill (CG 52). His at-sea commands include command of USS Reclaimer (ARS 42), command of USS Vincennes (CG 49), command of Destroyer Squadron 15 and command of Carrier Strike Group One. During his tour as commander, Carrier Strike Group One, he completed a 5th Fleet deployment supporting Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation New Dawn.
Ashore, he has served as the program integrator for the Navy Theater Wide Theater Ballistic Missile Defense program at the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization; Future Ships branch head in the N76 Division of the Chief of Naval Operations; assistant deputy director for Regional Operations on the Joint Chiefs of Staff; and, executive assistant to the Assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. In the Navy Central Command (NAVCENT) area of operations, he served as both the NAVCENT Chief of Staff and Deputy Commander 5th Fleet. Perez also served as the Deputy Director, Joint Interagency Task Force South (JIATFS). During his tour at JIATFS, he deployed to Haiti and participated in Operation Unified Response as the Commander, Joint Task Force Port Opening.
Perez earned a master's degree in Strategic Planning at the Naval Postgraduate School at Monterey, Calif. He completed a one-year Federal Executive Fellowship tour at the Strategic Studies Program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and served as a senior fellow with the chief of Naval Operations Strategic Studies Group.
His personal decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Navy and Marine Corps Medal, the Defense Meritorious Service Medal and the Meritorious Service Medal.