The SPECTRUM Group > CAPT Richard “Rich” Thayer, USN, Ret.

CAPT Richard “Rich” Thayer, USN, Ret.


  • Electronic Warfare
  • Undersea Domain Programs
  • Surface, Air, and Space Programs
  • Strategic Business Development
  • U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps
  • Strategic Partnerships


Captain Thayer supports clients working in undersea, surface, air, and space domains, particularly within the electromagnetic spectrum.

Prior to joining The SPECTRUM Group, Captain Thayer served as Director of Domestic Programs for Harris Corporation (now L3 Harris), leading its Electronic Warfare market businesses. Previously, he served as an Executive Director for ITT and subsequently Exelis, Inc. (during its spin-off from ITT in 2011). There, his responsibilities included shaping ITT/Exelis into a customer-focused organization by leading headquarters-level government relations and business development efforts with the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps. In addition, he led defense-wide initiatives in counter-IED and electronic warfare strategic growth platform arenas.

In his 30-year U.S. Navy career, Captain Thayer served as a Naval Aviator flying all variants of the Navy’s premier strike fighter, the F/A-18 Hornet and Super Hornet, from 13 different aircraft carriers, accumulating more than 1,000 carrier landings and 4,000 flight hours. He commanded a Carrier Air Wing and a Strike Fighter Squadron, both involved in combat operations. Captain Thayer also held a variety of high-level leadership positions in the Secretary of the Navy’s Office of Legislative Affairs and International Programs Office and served in the Joint Chiefs of Staff’s Combating Terrorism Directorate. He previously served as Dean of the College of Professional Development at the U.S. Naval Academy, leading both the Department of Naval Sciences and the Department of Leadership, Ethics, and Law.


  • Director, Domestic Programs, Harris Corporation (now L3 Harris)
  • Executive Director, Exelis
  • Executive Director, ITT
  • Dean, College of Professional Development, U.S. Naval Academy


  • M.S., National Security Strategy, National War College
  • B.S., Mathematics, United States Naval Academy