Vice Adm. Mat Winter is a 1984 graduate of the University of Notre Dame with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. He received his commission through the Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps and was designated a naval flight officer in 1985. Winter holds a Master’s in Computer Science from the Naval Postgraduate School and a Master's in National Resource Strategy from National Defense University’s Industrial College of the Armed Forces. He also received a Level III certification in Program Management and Test & Evaluation from the Defense System Management College.
Winter served operational tours as an A-6E Intruder Bombardier/navigator with Attack Squadrons 42, 85 and 34 making multiple deployments aboard aircraft carriers USS Saratoga (CV 60), USS America (CV 66), USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) and USS George Washington (CVN 73).
Winter’s major acquisition tours include assistant deputy program manager for the Joint Standoff Weapon System; chief engineer for Joint Strike Fighter Integrated Flight and Propulsion Control; deputy program manager for the Tactical Tomahawk cruise missile program; and his major acquisition command tour as the Precision Strike Weapons (PMA-201) program manager.
Winter has served flag tours as commander, Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division, China Lake/Point Mugu, California; assistant commander for Test and Evaluation, Naval Air Systems Command; PEO for Unmanned Aviation and Strike Weapons; director, Innovation Technology Requirements, and Test and Evaluation; the 24th chief of naval research and deputy program executive officer for the F-35 Lightning II Joint Program Office. In May 2017, he became the program executive officer for the F-35 Lightning II Joint Program Office, leading the Department of Defense’s largest acquisition enterprise that is responsible for developing and acquiring the F-35, the most advanced next-generation strike aircraft weapon system for the Navy, Air Force, Marines and many allied nations.
His personal awards include the Navy Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit (three awards), Defense Meritorious Service Medal (two awards), Navy Meritorious Service Medal (two awards), Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (four awards), Joint Service Achievement Medal (two awards), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Air Force Acquisition Excellence Award, Southwest Asia Service Medal, Kuwait Liberation Medal and various unit and sea service awards.