Sharon Dunbar is Vice President of Human Resources. In this capacity, she leads people operations and internal communications supporting 13,000 employees at over 100 General Dynamics Mission Systems locations worldwide. She also oversees the company’s community relations and investment programs.
Responsible for the GDMS People Excellence strategy, Sharon’s team ensures the acquisition and development of top talent vital to the company’s success; competitive pay and benefits; effective performance management and employee engagement; relevant data analytics; and a workplace culture that champions recognition, diversity and inclusion – all of which make GDMS a great place to work.
Prior to joining General Dynamics, Sharon served a 32-year career in the U.S. Air Force with assignments spanning human resources, acquisition, and legislative affairs. She retired in 2014 in the grade of Major General and as commander general of the Air Force’s Washington operations. In this capacity, she was responsible for organizing, training and equipping combat forces for aerospace expeditionary operations. Her 5,700-person command ensured homeland security and civil support in the national capital region, supported national special security events nationwide, and provided operational support for 60,000 personnel worldwide.
From 2008 to 2012, Sharon was assigned to the Pentagon where she served as the Air Force Director for Force Management and Director of Manpower, Organization and Resources. In these positions, she led the human resource strategy for 675,000 military and civilian employees and directed a $40 billion annual human capital budget. Her other assignments include working in the U.S. Senate, the Air Force Office of Legislative Affairs, and as an acquisition contracting officer.
A 1982 graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy, Sharon was in the third class of women to be accepted for admission and earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree in engineering and business management. She graduated with distinction from the National War College with a Master’s degree in National Security Studies, holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration from California State University at Long Beach, and completed her doctoral studies in Public Policy at The George Washington University. She has also completed the Senior Executive Fellows and Senior Managers in Government programs at Harvard University.
Sharon serves on the board of directors for the Armed Services YMCA, the Girl Scout Council of the Nation’s Capital, and Be The Change, Inc. She previously served as an honorary board member with USO – Metropolitan DC and as a Global Ambassador with Vital Voices.