Dr. Cara E. LaPointe

Cara E. LaPointe


A futurist who focuses on the intersection of technology, policy, ethics, and leadership, Cara LaPointe is the co-director of the Johns Hopkins Institute for Assured Autonomy, which works to ensure that autonomous systems are safe, secure, and trustworthy as they are increasingly integrated into every aspect of our lives.

During more than two decades in the United States Navy, LaPointe held numerous roles in areas including autonomous systems, acquisitions, ship design, naval force architecture, and unmanned vehicle technology integration. At Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution’s Deep Submergence Lab, she conducted research in underwater robotics, developing sensor fusion algorithms for deep-ocean autonomous underwater vehicle navigation.

LaPointe was previously a senior fellow at Georgetown University’s Beeck Center for Social Impact + Innovation, where she created the “Blockchain Ethical Design Framework” as a tool to drive social impact and ethics into blockchain technology. She has served as an advisor to numerous global emerging technology initiatives, including at the United Nations and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. LaPointe is a patented engineer, a White House Fellow, and a French American Foundation Young Leader. She served under two administrations as the interim director of the President’s Commission on White House Fellowships.

LaPointe holds a Doctor of Philosophy, awarded jointly by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and WHOI, a Master of Science and a Naval Engineer degree from MIT, a Master of Philosophy from the University of Oxford, and a Bachelor of Science from the United States Naval Academy.