Adjunct Senior Fellow, Technology and National Security Program
Government Affairs Policy Advisor, DLA Piper Global Law Firm
Tony Samp currently serves as a Government Affairs Policy Advisor at DLA Piper Global Law Firm. Mr. Samp advises businesses on public policy issues related to Artificial Intelligence (AI), Defense, Space, Directed Energy, and Technology on congressional strategies, the legislative process, and the regulatory process. Mr. Samp has over 12 years of experience working with members of Congress on defense and national security issues having served as Senior Policy Advisor to Senator Martin Heinrich, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.
Prior to joining DLA Piper, Mr. Samp was the founding director of the Senate Artificial Intelligence Caucus and was Senator Heinrich’s principal author of US$2.2 billion legislation, the Artificial Intelligence Initiative Act (AI-IA), which was endorsed by 11 major associations and industry leaders. Mr. Samp also advised the 15-member National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence. In 2019, Mr. Samp led a legislative strategy in the National Defense Authorization Act to establish a Chief Digital Engineering Recruitment and Management Officer within the Pentagon and create new career tracks in the Department of Defense focused on technologies like 5G, cloud computing and AI.
In 2011 while working in the House of Representatives, Mr. Samp was the founding director of the Congressional Directed Energy Caucus which has now grown to over two dozen bipartisan members of congress. Mr. Samp helped author, negotiate, and enact legislation on Directed Energy to (1) Create a US$100 million Directed Energy Weapon System prototyping program to transition high-powered-microwave and high-energy-laser weapons systems to the military; (2) establish a Senior-level position at the Pentagon for Directed Energy; and (3) require a Strategic Roadmap for fielding Directed Energy weapon systems.
Mr. Samp served as the lead advisor to the Ranking Member of the Strategic Forces Subcommittee, Senate Armed Services Committee, overseeing military space programs and launch policy. Mr. Samp also served as the lead advisor to the Ranking Member of the Emerging Threats and Capabilities Subcommittee, Senate Armed Services Committee, overseeing the Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation of military technologies.
Mr. Samp received his Master of Arts Degree in Strategic Security Studies with an emphasis on Counterterrorism and Homeland Security from the National Defense University in Fort McNair, Washington D.C. Mr. Samp received his undergraduate degree of International Affairs and minored in Business Administration and Spanish at Baylor University in Waco, Texas.