Chief Operating Officer


Joseph (Joe) A. Sanders is the Chief Operating Officer (COO) for the Defense Media Activity (DMA), a Department of Defense Field Activity. In this position, he serves as a Senior Management Official advising and assisting the Director, DMA on all matters relating to DMA, and DMA Lines of Business, missions, organizational realignments, responsibilities, functions, and reporting relationships. Mr. Sanders oversees policy development, strategic planning, business operations, process improvement, and other activity-level functions. He is also the DMA Performance Improvement Officer (PIO) and Senior Component Official for Privacy (SCOP).

Prior to joining DMA, Mr. Sanders was a Director at the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) from October 2008 to August 2012, where he led Department’s internal media communication, broadcasting, photographic and multimedia efforts, and served as a communication advisor to the Secretary and other senior leaders. 

Mr. Sanders also served as a Knowledge and Information Management senior consultant for The Wexford Group, International from October 2006 to October 2008. In this position, he provided consultation services to numerous clients to include the Army’s Asymmetric Warfare Group (AWG), Rapid Equipping Force, and Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization.

Mr. Sanders is a retired United States Marine Corps Chief Warrant Officer who served for over 20 years in numerous positions to include a senior advisor to the Commander Marine Forces Command; Marine Element Commander and Department Head for the Defense Information School (DINFOS); Director, 1st Marine Division Combat Camera Unit; and Deputy Director, Visual Information Center, Quantico, Virginia. He also served as a Combat Videographer and Photographer in numerous operational areas to include Iraq, Panama, and Honduras.

Mr. Sanders earned a Master of Science in Organizational Leadership from Colorado State University and a Bachelor of Arts in Business Communications from University of Maryland University College. He is a graduate of the Harvard Kennedy School Senior Executive Fellows program and the University of Notre Dame Executive Leadership and Management program.