Kathleen Fisher, PhD

1994 Hertz Fellow
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Kathleen Fisher is deputy office director of the Information Innovation Office (I2O) at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).

In this role, she provides technical leadership and works with program managers to develop, demonstrate, and transition programs, technologies, and capabilities to ensure information advantage for the United States and its allies. She previously served as a program manager in I2O from 2011 to 2014. As a program manager, she conceptualized, created, and executed programs in high-assurance computing and machine learning. Her High-Assurance Cyber Military Systems and Probabilistic Programming for Advancing Machine Learning programs continue to benefit the Department of Defense and U.S. commercial industry.

Fisher joins DARPA from Tufts University, where she is a professor in the Department of Computer Science, and served as chair of the department from 2016 to 2021. Earlier in her career, she was a principal member of the technical staff at AT&T Labs Research.

She is an ACM fellow and a Hertz Foundation fellow. She received her PhD in computer science from Stanford University. Fisher has served as chair of the ACM Special Interest Group in Programming Languages and as program chair for three of SIGPLAN’s marquee conferences: PLDI, OOPSLA, ICFP. She has also served as an associate editor for TOPLAS and as an editor of the Journal of Functional Programming.

Fisher has long been a leader in the effort to increase diversity and inclusion in computer science. She was co-chair of the Computing Research Association’s Committee on the Status of Women for three years, and she co-founded SIGPLAN’s Programming Language Mentoring Workshop series. Fisher is a recipient of the SIGPLAN Distinguished Service Award. She is a past chair of DARPA’s Information Science and Technology Study Group and a member of the Board of Trustees of Harvey Mudd College.

Graduate Studies

Stanford University
Computer Science
Type Systems for Object-Oriented Programming Languages


2007, Distinguished Member, Association for Computing Machinery; 2010, Fellow, Association for Computing Machinery

How Kathleen is Making an Impact

Making Our Software More Secure Arrow Right