Congressional Black Caucus Foundation (CBCF) Establishes Defense and Aerospace Policy Fellowships

With support from Raytheon Technologies, fellowships seek to address the problem of under-represented voices in defense and aerospace policy field

WASHINGTON — The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Inc. (CBCF) announced the establishment of the first-ever defense and aerospace policy fellowships as part of the CBCF Congressional Fellowship Program. With the support of Raytheon Technologies Corporation, the 23-month fellowship will begin in 2021. Created to support an increase in the representation of Black professionals in the defense and aerospace industry, CBCF’s initiative will provide an opportunity for fellows to gain insight into how defense policy is developed in Congress and how those policies are implemented in the private sector.

Fellowship applicants must demonstrate a commitment to aerospace and defense either through public policy or through professional experience, as well as a commitment to creating and implementing public policy to improve living conditions for underserved and underrepresented individuals. Candidates must have at least five years of community activism or grassroots organizing in a leadership position or a graduate or professional degree completed prior to the fellowship start date.

CBCF will place defense and aerospace policy fellows in Congressional Black Caucus member offices, on the House Armed Services Committee and with Raytheon Technologies’ Global Government Relations team in Washington, D.C. enabling them to gain a stronger understanding of the policy implications facing the U.S. military and national defense. Over the course of the fellowship, the cohort will gain significant exposure to lawmakers and policy professionals dedicated to formulating and implementing policy ranging from defense authorization and appropriations, aviation safety, defending U.S. airspace, and defense cyber security strategy.

“As a retired U.S. Army aviator and vice chair of the House Armed Services Committee, I have witnessed firsthand the underrepresentation of the Black community in the defense and aerospace industry,” said Rep. Anthony Brown. “To create and advance good policies critical to our national defense, we need a military and defense industry that reflects the diversity of America. I thank the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation and Raytheon Technologies for taking action and not allowing a void to be left.”

“The underrepresentation of diverse groups in the aerospace and defense industry comes at a significant cost,” said Senior Vice President of Global Government Relations at Raytheon Technologies, Tim McBride. “When we bring different viewpoints, perspectives and backgrounds into the conversation, we are able to drive innovation.  America’s aerospace and defense policy will benefit greatly from increased diversity among our policymakers.  We are proud to work with the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation to encourage more Black staffers to help define the future of defense and aerospace.”

To learn more and apply for CBCF defense and aerospace and other open fellowship opportunities, please visit:

To receive updates on CBCF’s social justice initiatives as they are rolled out over the coming months, subscribe to receive the e-newsletter and follow @CBCFinc on Twitter and Instagram.

About the CBCF

Established in 1976, the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Inc. (CBCF) is a non-partisan, nonprofit, public policy, research and educational institute committed to advancing the global Black community by developing leaders, informing policy and educating the public. For more information, visit

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Dr. Erica Southerland

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