Rita Wells

Rita Lappin Wells, Ph.D. has an extensive supply management background in both the private and public sectors.

Rita Wells

As an executive for a Fortune 500 corporation, Dr. Wells provided leadership for global subcontracting, purchasing, pricing, audit, and material management. As an industry executive, she also provided technical assistance to government organizations on international contracting, construction management, and financial assistance.


As a senior executive with the U.S. government, Dr. Wells managed multi-billion dollar programs while serving as a Deputy Assistant Secretary at the U.S. Department of Energy and an Associate Administrator at the U.S. Department of Transportation. She also has served in a variety of Department of Defense organizations in the United States and Japan as contracting officer and cost/price analyst.


Dr. Wells is the recipient of many awards including both the the Presidential Distinguished and Meritorious Rank awards that are awarded to less than one percent of government senior executives. She is a Fellow of the National Contract Management Association (NCMA) and earned a professional certification as a Certified Professional Contracts Manager (CPCM). 


Dr. Wells is a member of the Editorial Board for the Journal of Contract Management and a member of the NCMA Board of Advisors. An experienced educator, Dr. Wells was a faculty member at the Industrial College of the Armed Forces and the Air Force Institute of Technology as well as other institutions. Additionally, she is a member of the Falls Church Volunteer Fire Department serving as Treasurer.


Dr. Wells earned a PhD from the Ohio State University, an MBA from Southern Illinois University with a concentration in finance, and a BA from the University of Illinois.