Robert T. Hastings, Jr.

Robert T. Hastings is a proven leader, business executive, strategic communicator, author and veterans advocate with a track record of success spanning a forty-year multifaceted career in military, corporate leadership, and public service. As Executive Vice President for Bell (formerly Bell Helicopter), Mr. Hastings currently leads all aspects of the company’s global marketing and strategic communications programs.

Prior to joining Bell, Mr. Hastings was appointed by President George W. Bush as Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs. The Chief Communications Officer, senior public affairs official and spokesman for the Department of Defense, he was the principal advisor to the Secretary of Defense and senior Administration officials for strategic communication, public information, and internal information, leading a worldwide public affairs community of some 4,000 military and civilian personnel. During his tenure with the Pentagon, Mr. Hastings was a driving force in the development of the U.S. Government’s Strategic Communications concept of operations. He also led the development and fielding of the Defense Media Activity, the most comprehensive restructuring of defense public affairs in decades. Under Mr. Hastings’ leadership, the Defense and Service public affairs departments achieved an unprecedented level of alignment as well as significant advancement in military–media relations.

Mr. Hastings is a former U.S. Army officer with more than 40 years of combined federal and state military experience. His Army assignments include command tours in Aviation and Cavalry with operational duty in Germany, Eastern Europe, Central America, Iraq, and Bosnia. As an Army Public Affairs Officer, Hastings served as a Deputy Corps PAO, DINFOS instructor, and PAO on numerous operational missions. In the Texas State Guard, Brigadier General Hastings currently commands a regional brigade responsible for disaster response, homeland security and Defense Support to Civil Authorities. For his service with DoD he was awarded the Department of Defense Distinguished Public Service Medal. He has been honored by the University of Maryland as a Distinguished Alumni and by the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) with the Lloyd B. Dennis Distinguished Leadership Award. Mr. Hastings is a recipient of the Order of St. George Medallion from the Cavalry & Armor Association, the Order of St. Michael Award from the Army Aviation Association of America, and is a member of the U.S. Army Officer Candidate School Hall of Fame. Additionally, Mr. Hastings is a recipient of the LTC James “Maggie” Magellas Award, which is presented to leaders for extraordinary service to our nation both in uniform and as civilian servant leaders.

Mr. Hastings is a former Chairman of the North Texas Commission and serves or has served in numerous leadership roles with military, veteran and professional associations including the boards of directors for the Army Aviation Association of America, the National Defense Industrial Association, the Public Relations Society of America, the USO of Metropolitan Washington-Baltimore, the Armed Services YMCA, the World Affairs Council of Dallas, and the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.