Michael D. Rich
Michael D. Rich is the president and chief executive officer of the RAND Corporation. After two decades as RAND's executive vice president, during which he helped grow RAND to be the world's leading nonprofit and nonpartisan research organization, Rich assumed the top spot in November 2011.
As executive vice president, Rich was credited with building and leading numerous programs and initiatives, including the development and adoption of a new institutional strategy in 1995 that emphasized diversification and growth, and made sweeping changes to RAND's structure and operations. Rich was the driving force in establishing and growing RAND's research and analysis practice in the Middle East, including the RAND-Qatar Policy Institute (2003–2013), whose board of overseers he cochaired. Rich also guided the successful spin-off of the Council for Aid to Education, a New York–based nonprofit that advances corporate support of education, conducts policy research on higher education, and is focused on improving quality and access in higher education. CAE was once a division of RAND.
Rich also led the effort to gain land use entitlements from the City of Santa Monica and the California Coastal Commission to build the RAND headquarters campus, which opened in 2005 and today houses 1,000 RAND associates. The project earned Gold LEED Certification from the U.S. Green Building Council and the Urban Land Institute's award for excellence.
As a faculty member of the Pardee RAND Graduate School, the world's largest Ph.D. program in policy analysis, Rich also taught and advised students and chaired dissertation, qualifying exam, and admissions committees.
At RAND since 1976, Rich has been a researcher and project leader and has directed several of the organization's national security programs. As vice president for the RAND National Security Research Division and director of the RAND National Defense Research Institute, Rich headed the federally funded research and development center that provides research and analysis to the Office of the Secretary of Defense, the Joint Staff, the Unified Combatant Commands, the defense agencies, the Marine Corps, and the Navy. He was also responsible for national security studies for U.S. intelligence agencies, the U.S. Department of Energy, and many private foundations.
Rich has been a supporter of numerous policy and social services organizations in the Los Angeles community and beyond. Rich sits on the governing boards of the Council for Aid to Education and WISE & Healthy Aging, and on the advisory boards or councils of the Everychild Foundation, International Institute for Strategic Studies, Santa Monica–UCLA Medical Center and Orthopaedic Hospital, and UCLA Foundation. He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.
Rich received his B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley, and his J.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Khaled Abou El Fadl et al., Democracy and Islam in the New Constitution of Afghanistan, RAND Corporation (CF-186), 2003
Michael Rich, RAND and Middle East Policy Analysis, RAND Corporation (CP-473), 2003
Michael Rich, "RAND: How Think Tanks Interact with the Military," U.S. Foreign Policy Agenda, 7(3), 2002
Recent Media Appearances
Interviews: Miami Herald; The Palestinian Chronicle; Pittsburgh Tribune-Review; Santa Monica Daily Press
Commentary: Washington Times