Dr. Emma BelcherPloughshares Fund
Scott RoeckerNuclear Threat Initiative
Dr. Emma Belcher
Gender Champions in Nuclear Policy
Emma is president of Ploughshares Fund. Prior to arriving at Ploughshares, Emma spent nearly a decade at the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, where she led the foundation’s Nuclear Challenges grantmaking program. There, she developed and built the foundation’s Nuclear Challenge Big Bet team—from ideation to planning to management of a nearly $20 million budget.
Emma served as a Stanton Nuclear Security Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. She also served as an advisor in Australia’s Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet on national security and international affairs and as a public affairs officer at the Australian embassy in Washington, DC. She has a background in international security (Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University, PhD and MALD; University of Melbourne, BA [Hons]). While completing her PhD, she was a fellow in the International Security Program and Project on Managing the Atom at Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs.
Gender Champions in Nuclear Policy
Scott Roecker is the vice president for NTI’s Nuclear Materials Security Program. He joined NTI as senior director on NTI’s Materials Risk Management team in February 2021. He focuses on work to reduce the risks associated with nuclear and radiological materials through a number of NTI projects, including the Global Dialogue on Nuclear Security Priorities and the NTI Nuclear Security Index, as well as through targeted cooperation with priority countries. He also supports NTI’s nuclear disarmament verification work and advises leadership on issues related to Iran.
Roecker previously served as the director of the Office of Nuclear Material Removal at the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA). In this position, he was responsible for all U.S.-led activities to remove or dispose of highly enriched uranium (HEU) and separated plutonium with partner countries. The goal of this work is to eliminate excess special nuclear material that could be used by a non-state actor in an improvised nuclear device and included the removal of all HEU and separated plutonium from the Fast Critical Assembly in Japan.
From November 2014 through May 2017, Roecker served as the director for Nuclear Threat Reduction at the National Security Council. In that role, he coordinated the development and implementation of policies to prevent nuclear terrorism through efforts to secure nuclear and radiological materials, minimize HEU and plutonium, and counter nuclear smuggling. He also was the sous-sherpa for the United States at the 2016 Nuclear Security Summit and led efforts to implement an outreach campaign designed to reach entry into force of the Amended Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material.
Roecker has also served as the senior policy advisor for the Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation, where he provided policy guidance on nuclear security activities across all nonproliferation programs at NNSA. He has worked in the Office of the Second Line of Defense, where he managed border security engagement with partners in South and Central Asia. Roecker began his career at NNSA working with Russia and China to secure nuclear materials. He holds a Masters in International Affairs from The George Washington University and a Bachelor of Science from The University of Minnesota. He is proficient in Russian.