The One Defense Enterprise


Stephen Rodriguez - Managing Partner

Stephen is a venture capitalist and founder who specializes in the Aerospace & Defense sector. A defense policy advisor with more than 17 years supporting the U.S. national security community, he is the Government-focused Mentor for Techstars, 500 Startups and Stanford StartX. He is a U.S. Army "Mad Scientist" and serves on the Boards of CENSA, DMGS, HighSide, ODL Services, Omelas, Public Spend Forum, Training Leaders International, Uniken, Vantage Robotics, and WarOnTheRocks. 

Major General John Wharton (US Army, Ret.) - Managing Partner

John most recently served as Commanding General of the United States Army Research, Development and Engineering Command. There he led 13,800 scientists, engineers, and support personnel at more than 100 global locations controlling 75% of the Army’s R&D budget. Subordinate organizations included: The Army Research Laboratory, the Edgewood Chemical and Biological Center and the five Research and Development Centers: Armament (Picatinny Arsenal, NJ); Aviation and Missile (Redstone Arsenal, AL); Communication and Electronic (Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD); Soldier Support (Natick, MA); and Tank and Automotive (Warren, MI). 

John served as the Commanding General, U.S. Army Sustainment Command and Rock Island Arsenal, Illinois. Prior to that he was the Chief of Staff at the U.S. Army Materiel Command and the Commanding General, AMC-Southwest Asia/U.S. Army Central G-4/CFLCC C-4.  John has also commanded units in Afghanistan, Iraq, Kuwait, Korea, and the Sinai.  He has a degree from the United States Military Academy and a master’s degree in National Security and Strategic Studies from the Naval War College. He has also served as a Visiting Senior Research Fellow, Institute for National Strategic Studies (INSS), National Defense University (NDU) in Washington, DC  and Senior Advisor  to the National Security Technology Acceleration Program (MD5).

Colonel Patrick Mahaney (US Army, Ret.) - Partner

Patrick is the Senior Advisor, Department of Defense's MD5 National Security Technology Accelerator and Co-Founder and COO of the National Center for Urban Operations (non-profit). He served as Director of the Chief of Staff of the Army's Strategic Studies Group following a tour as the CFR 2013-2014 Army Fellow. He commanded the U.S. Army's Asymmetric Warfare Group where he was responsible for global support in countering asymmetric and irregular threats. He commanded a special forces battalion and a special operations task force in Afghanistan. His previous assignments include service in the 7th Special Forces Group, Joint Special Operations Command, the Special Warfare Center and School, and a range of other combat and operational assignments. 

Joseph Moran - Partner

Joe is President of Next Defense, a leading non-profit firm focused on managing Other Transaction vehicles, consortia as well as the sponsor of Chart Venture Partners (CVP), a $100 million early-stage venture capital fund investor in the dual-use, civil-military technology space. 

John Thorne - Partner

John provides clients with technology horizon scanning and intellectual property strategy.  He has been a consultant for government and private sector entities the defense and aerospace industries since 2011.  His government clients included DoD, DHS, with extensive experience (six years) working closely with the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) Research Directorate’s Defense Laboratories Office, providing research and development policy, strategy, and implementation consulting. Prior to consulting in 2011, John deployed to Kandahar, Afghanistan for 13 months as a Department of Army Civilian where he advised Brigade and Squadron commanders and staffs on human intelligence issues during counterinsurgency and stabilization operations.  For his accomplishments he was awarded the Army’s Superior Civilian Service Medal.  

Board of Advisors

Ryan Evans

WarOnTheRocks - Founder & Editor-In-Chief 

Josh Gladden

University of Mississippi - Vice Chancellor of Research

Aaron Harris

Y-Combinator - Partner

Jon Mogford

Texas A&M University - Vice Chancellor of Research

Rob Neivert

500 Startups - Venture Partner

Rachelle Oribio

Techstars - Program Director

John Ryu

Scout Ventures - Partner

Trae Stephens

Founders Fund - Partner

David Teten

HOF Capital - Managing Partner

Sam Zega

Vice President - Safran

Denise Zheng

Vice President - The Business Roundtable

*Institutional affiliations are shown only for identification purposes and do not necessarily imply a corporate relationship with One Defense.