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Benjamin Cheatham

Senior Partner, Philadelphia
Specializes in applying analytics in the context of performance transformations at defense and security agencies

About Benjamin

Ben, a leader in our Public Sector Practice, focuses on defense and security issues. He helps defense agencies to improve their operational efficiency, agility, and logistics while preserving and enhancing their combat readiness.

He also leads the firm’s work in security globally, helping clients in law enforcement, corrections, immigration, and intelligence to design more effective law-enforcement processes, build capabilities, and enhance public safety. In addition, he advises clients on the development and use of “bespoke” analytics solutions to achieve exceptional outcomes.

Examples of Ben’s recent client work include the following:

  • leading a multiyear program to improve operations and reduce sustainment costs for a multirole tactical air-training platform; this effort included developing and deploying tools to optimize complex trade-offs between mission readiness and costs
  • developing an innovative performance-based logistics-support strategy (delivering on the first phase of the project) for a swing-role combat aircraft, including engaging second-tier suppliers to reduce the total cost of ownership for engines, avionics, and hydro-mechanical systems
  • leading a strategic review of a high-readiness light mechanized brigade to identify ways to increase the utilization of combat and support assets and to improve the brigade’s performance by rebalancing investments in training and equipment to match requirements in preparation for deployment
  • conducting a top-to-bottom review of one of the largest corrections departments in the United States, developing a suite of advanced-analytics tools to help officers to classify, house, and monitor high-risk inmates
  • piloting a multichannel open-source platform with five leading global law-enforcement, intelligence, and immigration agencies to improve their understanding of and relationship with the community, anticipate and prevent gang-related violence, and monitor domestic and foreign terror threats
  • leading department-wide performance transformations at three of the largest police forces in the United States, with a three-part focus on reducing crime, improving community collaboration, and enhancing officer professionalism
  • developing a comprehensive national-security strategy for a Latin American country, improving the operations of the police, stemming narcotics trafficking, and building cross-agency intelligence capabilities

Published work

Improving disaster recovery,” McKinsey & Company, June 2015

Performance improvement and the stimulus,” (PDF–191 KB), McKinsey on Governance, Summer 2009

Private investment opportunities in public transport,” (PDF–193 KB), McKinsey Quarterly, April 2007


UK Ministry of Defence
Chief of Defence Logistics Commendation

Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tucker-Voss Award


Massachusetts Institute of Technology
MSc, civil engineering

University of Pennsylvania
BA, architecture