On August 5, 2020, Defense News and C4ISRNET hosted a virtual event in partnership with, the Virtual Space & Missile Defense Symposium (SMD) in which they explored the major lessons learned from SMD and hear from military leadership about their procurement and technology priorities to modernize missile defense.


The U.S. space and missile defense community’s challenge is simple: stay ahead of the threat from nations such as China, North Korea and Russia. Across the Department of Defense, leaders are adapting existing systems to better counter the current threat, moving forward on major programs of record that improve nearly every element of the kill chain, and investing in next-generation technologies, such as radars, hypersonics and counter technologies.

Here are the speakers who joined this conversation:

  • Lt. Gen. L. Neil Thurgood, Director of Hypersonics, Directed Energy, Space, and Rapid Acquisition, U.S. Army
  • Brigadier General Brian W. Gibson, Director, Air and Missile Defense Cross Functional Team, U.S. Army Futures Command
  • William B. Nelson, Director of the Assured, Positioning, Navigation and Timing Cross Functional Team, U.S. Army Futures Command
  • Thomas Webber, Director for the Technical Center, U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command
  • Thomas Laliberty, Vice President, Land Warfare & Air Defense, Raytheon Missiles & Defense