Mr. Robert Woods was appointed as the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary (Manpower and Reserve Affairs) April 30, 2017, and concurrently is serving as the Acting Assistant Secretary (M&RA). Prior to this appointment, he served as the Assistant General Counsel (M&RA) from Nov. 22, 2009. As Assistant General Counsel, Mr. Woods was the legal advisor to the Secretariat for matters concerning military and civilian personnel policy. Additionally, he coordinated the efforts of Navy attorneys world-wide in administrative and federal court employment litigation.
Mr. Woods was appointed as a member of the Senior Executive Service and as Special Counsel Litigation June 21, 2009. As Special Counsel, he adjudicated the most important litigation matters under the cognizance of the General Counsel. Prior to his appointment as Special Counsel, he served as the Department of the Navy’s (DON) Deputy Assistant General Counsel (M&RA) from June 2007 and as Counsel for the Office of Civilian Human Resources (OCHR) from March 2003. As OCHR Counsel he served as the principal legal advisor to the staff of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Civilian Human Resources), and the Director, OCHR. Prior to becoming OCHR Counsel, Mr. Woods served an Associate Counsel within the Office of the Assistant General Counsel (M&RA). He began his service with the DON and the Navy Office of General Counsel (OGC) in February 1999. In the year prior to his employment with the DON, he served as an Assistant Counsel handling labor and employment litigation with the General Services Administration and the Department of Commerce.
Mr. Woods retired from the U.S. Air Force in February 1998, after more than 20 years of active duty. He attended law school under the Air Force Funded Legal Education Program, graduating from Rutgers Law School in 1983 and being admitted to practice law in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Following assignments as an Assistant Staff Judge Advocate and Staff Judge Advocate, Mr. Woods was selected to attend Georgetown Law Center. There he earned his Master of Laws in Labor and Employment Law in 1989. Following assignments as a labor and employment trial attorney at Air Force Headquarters and Staff Judge Advocate at Royal Air Force Alconbury, United Kingdom, Mr. Woods concluded his career as the Chief of the Air Force Central Labor Law Office. During his Air Force career, Mr. Woods was awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal and the Meritorious Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters. He is also a graduate of the Air Force Squadron Officers' School, Air Command and Staff College, and Air War College. Mr. Woods earned his Bachelor of Science in Psychology from King's College in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, and his Master of Arts in Human Resources Management from Pepperdine University in Malibu, California.