Rich Choppa HeadshotRich Choppa is the Owner and President of DellaCioppa Enterprises, specializing in Management, Sales and Leadership Consulting with 40 years experience in Aerospace and Defense.

After graduating from SUNY Oneonta, Rich joined the US Army, with tactical assignments in Ranger and Airborne units. He served multiple tours on the Korean Demilitarized Zone, parachuted into combat during the Panama Invasion and commanded a battery of paratroopers liberating Kuwait during the Gulf War. After learning Russian, Rich served throughout the former Soviet Union as Defense and Army Attache at the American Embassies in Minsk, Belarus and Chisinau, Moldova, as an embedded Peacekeeper in the Russian Airborne Brigade in Bosnia/Herzegovina, and as a START/INF Treaty Inspector at the nuclear missile factory in Votkinsk, Russia. He finished his career as the Director of Russia Policy and the Caucasus/Central Asia Director in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, where he survived the 9/11 Attack on the Pentagon, and deployed to Afghanistan. He retired as a Lieutenant Colonel, and was awarded the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star, and thirty three medals, ribbons, and foreign awards. He also earned the Ranger Tab, the Master Parachutist Badge with Combat Jump Device, the Office of the Secretary of Defense Staff Badge, the Orders of Saint Barbara and Saint Maurice.

After retirement, Rich served as Chief of Staff of the Helping Our Heroes Foundation at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, providing services and advocacy for catastrophically wounded soldiers returning from Afghanistan and Iraq. He also served as a mentor under the Wounded Warrior Mentorship Program, helping wounded veterans return to the private sector.

Rich spent almost two decades as an Executive at the Boeing Company, where he served in Program Management, Business Development and Sales roles. As the Program Director for Boeing ICBM Sustainment Systems business unit, Rich was responsible for managing the maintenance and sustainment of the Minuteman Weapons System, America’s land-based nuclear deterrent. He led an organization of 800+ employees, with factories, laboratories and testing facilities in Utah, California and Ohio, delivering annual revenues of $400M. As the Director of Business Development and Global Sales and Marketing for the Boeing Missile & Weapon Systems division, he delivered $14+B in sales in the areas of integrated air and missile defense, strategic deterrence systems, and direct attack weapons.