About BENS

Employment & Internship Opportunities

Business Executives for National Security is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization of senior business and industry executives who volunteer time and energy to share best practices from their corporate experience with military and government leaders across the national security enterprise. Our members have one goal: to make our country safer by assisting those leaders in identifying, developing, and applying solutions to business challenges confronting their commands and organizations. Founded in 1982, BENS has offices in New York, Washington D.C., Silicon Valley, Chicago, Atlanta, Dallas, and Boston.

Director for Policy/Projects

The Director for Policy/Projects is a member of BENS’ small policy team, reporting to BENS’ Senior Vice President for Policy/Projects.

The Director for Policy/Projects helps develop and manage national security-related projects and activities, in partnership with one or more federal agencies and/or congressional committees in the national security arena. The person managing this portfolio should be familiar with the Department of Defense and military services, the Department of Homeland Security and its subcomponent entities, the law enforcement and intelligence community, and all relevant oversight committees. Knowledge and ease in dealing with the Departments of Treasury, Commerce, and State is a plus. With respect to all, we focus on issues related to improving the effectiveness of business operations, including through innovative management reform, organizational transformation, workforce strategic planning, procurement/acquisition practices, enterprise-wide shared services, etc. The position requires building relationships, working with teams, and producing results. The incumbent takes the lead on some projects and supports staff colleagues on others. Engaging the organization’s members in each effort is a primary component of the incumbent’s responsibilities.


  • Four to ten years professional experience in the public or private sector, including project management experience;
  • Advanced communication skills (oral and written);
  • Comfortable working with high level officials and business executives;
  • Experience running (and letting others run) working meetings;
  • Strong interest in national security, homeland security, and U.S. government organization and processes;
  • A working knowledge of national security-related innovation and reform issues and challenges. Familiarity with organization transformation, change management, workforce, shared services and/or acquisition issues useful;
  • Master’s degree or Juris Doctor preferred;
  • Flexibility to travel (travel not extensive; only periodic).

To Apply

Qualified applicants should send a cover letter, resume, and writing sample (less than 3 pages) to Mara Rudman, BENS Senior Vice President for Policy/Projects, at mrudman@bens.org. Please include the position title “Director for Policy/Projects” in the subject line of your email.

The Stanley A. Weiss Research Associate Internship Program

Business Executives for National Security (BENS) relies on our Research Associates. They contribute to all aspects of our work in applying best business practices to addressing the nation’s most critical security challenges. Research Associates receive substantive research and writing assignments in BENS’ major areas of work. For a complete list of current project/policy efforts and descriptions, click here.

Principal Duties & Responsibilities

Research Associates are integral to the BENS team. They have substantive research and administrative responsibilities, supporting BENS’ organizational goals and the work BENS is doing with government partners. Work includes:

Research and Project Support

  • Tracking and analyzing developments of relevant policy issues, such as defense acquisition reform efforts.
  • Covering Congressional hearings or other key meetings, including taking notes and drafting follow up memoranda.
  • Working with BENS project/policy staff to provide supporting research for work with BENS government partners, including: literature reviews, report summaries, bibliographies, analyses of relevant articles.
  • Engaging with business leaders who are BENS members, and other public and private sector partners, to support BENS work.
  • Assisting with the preparation of and participating in project-related events, including drafting background memos, event agendas trip books, and taking meeting notes.
  • Helping to draft written products such as: media pieces, correspondence, reports and memos to government partners.

Administrative Support

  • Setting up and breaking down all project-related events.
  • Supporting the logistical and database needs of all project-related events.
  • General office administrative support.


BENS offers Research Associate internship positions throughout the year. Spring terms typically run January-May, Summer terms June-August, and Fall terms September-December. This is a paid position. You should be available to work full-time for four or five days each week.


BENS accepts applicants from all backgrounds and degree programs (e.g., International Affairs, Security Studies, Public Policy, Economics, or any professional school graduate program). Most applicants have, or are in the process of completing, an undergraduate or graduate degree. However, candidates are selected at a variety of career points, depending on their skills and prior experience. Strong writing and research skills are required, as is an interest in national security issues. Previous work experience is strongly desired. Applicants must also be computer-literate and Internet-savvy. For more information, please call (202) 296-2125 or email PolicyInternships@bens.org.

To Apply

All applicants are encouraged to explore our website before applying; demonstrating an interest in, and understanding of, BENS’ mission is critical to a competitive application.

Please send a concise cover letter, a one-page resume, and a 2-3 page writing sample to the Research Associate Coordinator at PolicyInternships@bens.org. Applications that do not include all documentation will not be considered.

Deadlines for receipt of applications

> Fall: July 31
> Spring: November 30
> Summer: April 15 (We may begin review in March.)

BENS National Office | 1030 15th Street NW, Suite 200 East | Washington, D.C. 20005
Phone: (202) 296-2125 | Fax: (202) 296-2490 | Email: bens@bens.org

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