Director of Total Force Manpower and Resources

Official photo of Mr. Richard A. Robbins, Director of Total Force Planning and Requirements

Mr. Robbins oversees the development and implementation of statutes, policies, federal regulations and procedures that shape Total Force Manpower and Resources determination, allocation and management. He also ensures that manpower, personnel, training, safety, health hazards, human factors engineering and habitability considerations align to promote desired operational capabilities, future readiness and acceptable lifecycle costs for acquisition programs.


During a career as a naval officer, Mr. Robbins’ sea service included USS Rich, Aylwin, Buchanan and Elliot. He was also the Chief Staff Officer of Destroyer Squadron 21 and commanded USS Bowen and Destroyer Squadron 15, comprised of the seven forward deployed frigates and destroyers of the United States Seventh Fleet.

Ashore, Mr. Robbins served on the Chief of Naval Operations staff as the head of Enlisted Strength Plans, head of the Manpower Requirements Programming Division and Deputy Director of the Military Personnel Policy and Career Progression Division. He also served as the head of the Manpower and Training Section in the Planning and Programming Division and as the Deputy Director of the Commander in Chief Liaison Division.

Upon his retirement from the Navy, Mr. Robbins became the manager of Manpower Requirements Analysis at Whitney, Bradley and Brown, a consulting firm in Vienna, Virginia. He returned to government service as the head of the Manpower, Personnel and Training branch in the Assessment Division of the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations.

Mr. Robbins then served as the Deputy Director of the Total Force Manpower and Programming Division before being named the head of the Strategic Planning and Analysis Directorate in the Office of the Chief of Naval Personnel. He then assumed the role of Director of Requirements and Program and Budget Coordination in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness before assuming his current duties as the Director of Total Force Manpower and Resources.


Mr. Robbins began his military career as a midshipman at the U.S. Naval Academy, graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree. He later received a Master of Science in Operations Research from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, California.



Deputy Director of Total Force Manpower and Resources

Mr. Hessel champions an enterprise-wide strategic approach to workforce resourcing and allocation, recognizing the complex interdependences, readiness underpinnings, impacts to mission and risk considerations associated with the sizing and shaping of all elements of the department’s Total Force of military personnel, civilian employees and contracted support.

His responsibilities include policy development and oversight to more than 40 Department of Defense agencies, activities and organizations related to a balanced multisector workforce; manpower-mix criteria and workforce-sourcing criteria; insourcing of contracted services; military essentiality; overall Total Force Manpower Management; inventory of contracted services and the enterprise-wide Contractor Manpower Reporting Application; operational contract support; global force management; A-76 public-private competitions and inventory of inherently governmental and commercial activities. Mr. Hessel is actively involved in and a regular contributor to major ongoing Department of Defense initiatives such as resourcing and staffing of cyber mission forces and mission and resource prioritization initiatives aligned to the department’s core business processes.

Mr. Hessel interacts across all elements of Office of the Secretary of Defense staff, with all Department of Defense components and with external stakeholders such as Congress, the Government Accountability Office and Office of Management and Budget on matters related to workforce mix and alignment, sizing and shaping of all sectors of the total force to meet mission requirements, and strategic workforce-planning efforts. He oversees manpower equities as part of the Department of Defense program and budget review process to ensure readiness and fiscal outcomes that best serve department interests. He participates in cross-functional and intradepartmental working groups developing guidance and policy on workforce-to-workload alignment and sourcing, manpower allocation and apportionment, workforce optimization and manpower management, strategic human-capital planning, competency and community management, fully burdened costing models and methodologies, strategic planning, performance management and acquisition workforce matters.


Prior to joining Personnel and Readiness in early 2009, Mr. Hessel served on the Chief of Naval Operations staff. He worked nearly seven years for and in support of the Manpower Optimization branch of the Total Force Requirements directorate, most recently as acting director for Commercial Services Management and branch head for Manpower Optimization. During his time with the Chief of Naval Operations staff, he set requirements and guidance to implement program policies and applicable statutes, addressed future program requirements and was responsible for oversight of two acquisition offices to ensure program success in a constrained budget environment. Before government service in 2007, Mr. Hessel served as a senior analyst and program manager at a leading defense professional-services provider in support of the Navy’s Manpower Optimization branch.


Mr. Hessel holds a Bachelor of Arts in politics from Brandeis University and completed graduate coursework in defense policy and strategic studies at Southwest Missouri State University. He has completed extensive coursework in Continuous Process Improvement, Lean Six Sigma and acquisition-related matters with the Defense Acquisition University.