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Invisible, Indispensable Infrastructure

The world is supported by infrastructure that no one can see. It keeps computers and communication networks running, detects hurricanes and wildfires, tracks methane and carbon emissions. And we go nowhere without it. It guides ships and planes, cars and homes. It battles disease and helps take a bite out of crime. This infrastructure consumes little or no concrete or asphalt and few steel beams for support, yet it circles the entire planet. It is the network of communication and observation satellites.

This is the podcast series of the Invisible, Indispensable Infrastructure campaign. Learn more at

Episode 1: The Cloud Adoption Journey from Space

In the first episode of Invisible, Indispensable Infrastructure, we hear from Karl Horne, Vice President of Cloud and Digital Solutions at SES. Karl is responsible for technology and business strategies for satellite connected cloud and Digital Transformation solutions aimed at the Enterprise, Public Sector and Telco/MNO markets. In this capacity, Karl works across the ecosystem of cloud and network service providers, technology vendors, and solutions integrators to establish SES’s solutions in support of the industry shift towards 5G, IoT, and Cloud Powered Digital Transformations.

Karl has over 30 years of experience in the telecom/datacom industry. Prior to his current position at SES, he has held various Engineering, CTO and Business Development roles for Ciena Corporation, Scientific Atlanta and AT&T Tridom. Karl holds a BSEE from Clemson University.

This Podcast Series is Underwritten by

With Thanks to Our Corporate Partners

Episode 2: A Better Satellite World for All Nations

In the second episode of Invisible, Indispensable Infrastructure, we hear from Aarti Holla-Maini, Director of UNOOSA, a true champion of the peaceful uses of space and its development.

Aarti Holla-Maini is the Director of the UN Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA), having taken up post on September 18 following her appointment by United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres. Ms. Holla-Maini brings over 25 years of experience in the space and satellite sector, working predominantly with international organizations and regulators. Prior to the United Nations, she held the post of Secretary-General of the Global Satellite Operators Association. Ms. Holla-Maini is a recognized leader with a strong track record in forging public-private and cross-sector partnerships; high-level advocacy at the international level; strategic communication and managing diverse stakeholders.

Under her leadership, Ms. Holla-Maini expanded the association from being a regional organization to a global one representing commercial satellite operators around the world. She was one of the chief architects of the Crisis Connectivity Charter established in 2015 for emergency telecommunications via satellite with the UN World Food Programme’s Emergency Telecommunications Cluster and has, on multiple occasions, secured recognition and policy support for space technologies to play their rightful role in connecting the unconnected, in Europe, Africa and beyond.

The appointment of Ms. Holla-Maini comes at a time when activities in space are being increasingly driven by the private sector. Her deep experience in high-level advocacy with international organizations and regulators, along with her understanding of the opportunities and challenges facing the space sector, will serve Member States well as they seek to access and leverage the benefits of space to accelerate sustainable development. Ms. Holla-Maini’s experience has included service as a member of the World Economic Forum's Global Future Council on Space; member of the Advisory Group of the Space Sustainability Rating managed by eSpace at EPFL Space Center; member of the Advisory Board of the Satellite Industry Association of India; Senior Space Policy Advisor to Forum Europe and an Expert Advisor on Space Traffic Management for European Union studies 2021-2023.

Ms. Holla-Maini holds a Bachelor’s degree in law with German law from Kings College London and a Master’s degree in business administration from HEC in France. She is fluent in French, German and Punjabi alongside her native English and has moderate knowledge of Dutch.

Episode 3: Keeping You Safe and Connected Every Day from Space

In the third episode of Invisible, Indispensable Infrastructure, we take a look at how satellites ensure safety and keep things moving down the road every day with Martin Jefferson, Commercial IoT Data Services Manager - North America at Globalstar.

Martin Jefferson currently serves as the Commercial IoT Data Services Manager for Globalstar, a position he has held for 15 years. With over 30 years of experience as an experienced senior technical sales executive, he helps drive the satellite IoT business for the brand and acts as key liaison for Globalstar’s Value-Added Manufacturers and Resellers. Globalstar is an American satellite communications company operating a low Earth orbit satellite constellation for mobile voice and data communications. The company provides business and recreational communications for industries, government and individual customers located in remote areas. Before joining Globalstar, Martin served as General Manager and Owner of Kelcom, Inc.’s Hamilton branch, as Director of Sales - Eastern Canada for Glentel, Inc. and as Vice President and General Manager at Digital Mobile Systems, Inc. He received his Bachelors of Science in Microbiology from the University of Toronto.

Episode 4: Satellites as Infrastructure

It’s an exciting time to be a part of the space and satellite industry. Launches are happening every day from New Zealand to Florida. The ground systems are going virtual. We have software-defined satellite. And all of these changes are coming together to impact the way satellites interact with infrastructure. As an industry, we are now in a place where we are augmenting and sometimes even supplanting terrestrial infrastructure.

In the fourth episode of the Invisible, Indispensable Infrastructure podcast series, we explore this topic in-depth with a panel of five women experts from SSPI-WISE (SSPI Women in Space Engagement). This episode is based on the recent SSPI-WISE online conversation, Satellites as Infrastructure, that took place on April 25, 2024.

Our expert panel includes:

  • Toni Lee Rudnicki, Fractional COM/Founder, TLR Consulting LLC and Elevating Women Working Group Co-Chair (moderator)
  • Haley Bauser, Senior Product Engineer, Varda Space Industries
  • Beatrice Mok, Corporate Development Director, Kacific
  • Caroline Reid, Spacecraft Operations Engineer, Rocket Lab
  • Sarah Tulaimat, Senior Account Manager, Appliot

Episode 5: Building Our Dreams of the Future in Space, One Block at a Time

In the fifth and final episode of Invisible, Indispensable Infrastructure, SSPI’s Lou Zacharilla speaks with Jonathan Baliff, Chief Financial Officer at Redwire Space. Redwire, based in Florida, is a new leader in mission-critical space solutions and high-reliability components for the next generation space economy. On April 24, Redwire received the 2024 Business Award from the Luxembourg-American Chamber of Commerce, becoming the first space and satellite company to receive this honor.

Jonathan Baliff has been a leader in the aerospace, energy and infrastructure sectors for over 25 years as both a public company senior executive and investment and commercial banker. Mr. Baliff has served on the Redwire Board of Directors and as Chair of the Audit Committee since September 2021. Mr. Baliff also serves on the Board of Directors and Audit Committee of Texas Capital Bancshares, Inc (NYSE: TCBI). Most recently, Mr. Baliff was the President of Genesis Park Acquisition Corporation, the special purpose acquisition corporation that merged with Redwire.

Previously Mr. Baliff served as Chief Executive Officer of Bristow Group (NYSE: BRS), the world’s largest commercial helicopter and industrial aviation company serving the energy and government sectors. He served as Bristow’s Chief Financial Officer from 2010 to 2014 until his appointment to Chief Executive Officer. Prior to joining Bristow Group in 2010, Mr. Baliff was the Executive Vice President for Strategy at NRG Energy, where he led the development and implementation of NRG’s overall strategy. Before joining NRG in 2008, Mr. Baliff was a Managing Director in Credit Suisse’s Global Energy Group, where he advised energy infrastructure companies on over $50 billion in merger and acquisition assignments and project and corporate financings starting in 1997. Mr. Baliff started his business career with J.P. Morgan’s Natural Resource Group in 1995 after nearly a decade flying F-4 Phantom fighter aircraft in the US Air Force, including the first combat missions during the first Gulf War.