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  • Victoria Krisman posted an article

    In this Making Leaders podcast, we hear from Steve Bates, Director of Systems Engineering at Maxar Technologies and the 2022 SSPI Mentor of the Year. In his current role, he is...

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    In this Making Leaders podcast, we hear from Steve Bates, Director of Systems Engineering at Maxar Technologies and the 2022 SSPI Mentor of the Year. In his current role, he is responsible for managing a team of systems engineers and developing the safety roadmap for Maxar. Steve draws on his deep experience in aviation safety from a long and impressive career in the industry to help Maxar ensure that the company meets the demanding safety requirements for a crewed NASA spacecraft as part of the Power and Propulsion Element (PPE) for Gateway, a vital part of NASA’s Artemis program. He is also responsible for preparing Maxar engineers to safely execute new missions as part of the company’s business development strategy.

    Steve began his career in the U.S. Marine Corps where he worked primarily in electronic engineering. He went on to become an Engineering Manager at Boeing, where he led technical groups responsible for integration and architecture development of large networked systems, including developing and implementing Network Security requirements. While working at Boeing, Steve served as the FAA-approved Safety and Airworthiness Manager with complete responsibility for Flight Deck design and requirements on the 737 and 757. Learn more about Steve.

     

       

     

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  • Victoria Krisman posted an article

    In this Making Leaders podcast, we hear from Chiara Chocchiara, Systems Operations Engineer for the European Organisation for the Exploitation...

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    In this Making Leaders podcast, we hear from Chiara Chocchiara, Systems Operations Engineer for the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT). In her current role at EUMETSAT, she is responsible for operations preparation for future satellite missions with a particular focus on Earth Observation. Chiara manages the mission Reference Operations Plan and Handover Plan to Operations as part of this work.

    Since joining EUMETSAT, Chiara has held many different roles, each of which gained increased responsibilities over the previous role. She acted as the Launch and Early Operations Phase (LEOP) Service Manager for the launch of Metop-C satellites, a position in which she also needed to cover the work for a missing role in her team. Chiara initiated and led procurement of an improved solution for electronic logbooks for the Mission Control Center by writing up the requirements and analyzing the proposals from external contractors to determine the best fit technically and financially. She also wrote the requirements and oversaw development and implementation of the newest User Notification System at EUMETSAT. Chiara has a Master of Science degree in Aerospace, Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering from the Università di Bologna, a Master of Business Administration from the Rome Business School and is a graduate of the Space Economy Academy, and she is currently working on her PhD in Space Economy at the University of Palmero. She received a Promise Award from SSPI in 2022. Learn more about Chiara.

     

       

     

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  • Victoria Krisman posted an article

    In this Making Leaders podcast, we hear from Dr. Anthony Yuen, Specialist Consultant at McKinsey &...

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    In this Making Leaders podcast, we hear from Dr. Anthony Yuen, Specialist Consultant at McKinsey & Company in the Boston office and Chair of the Space Generation Advisory Council (SGAC). Until recently, he was a practicing physician and Assistant Professor at Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City. Throughout his 10+ years medical career, he has advocated passionately for the use of space technology to benefit health on Earth, including the use of satellite technology for telemedicine, satellite imagery for disaster response and Earth observation data to inform public and population health.

    Some of Anthony’s recent healthcare work includes a research project on the use of satellite and ground-based pollution data to predict COVID-19 caseloads using machine learning. He also performed a systematic review with the NASA Exploration Medical Capability Group on the impact of elevated ambient carbon dioxide levels in spacecraft on the stability of medications in space. Anthony served as Co-Director of the Weill Cornel – OweF Tele-Simulation Day, in which tele-simulation was used to train analogue astronauts and their medical ground crews to respond to simulated real-life emergencies during an analogue mission. He is a member of the Working Group on Space and Global Health at the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space. Anthony also served as the Director of the Simulation-based Discharge Program at the New York Presbyterian Hospital, a multidisciplinary project focused on the use of simulation technology to enhance discharge education and preparation for caregivers of children with medical devices. Anthony received a Promise Award from SSPI in 2022. Learn more about Anthony.

     

       

     

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  • Victoria Krisman posted an article

    In this Making Leaders podcast, we hear from Donya Naz Divsaler, Co-Founder and CEO of Caidin Biotechnologies, a startup that aims to improve...

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    In this Making Leaders podcast, we hear from Donya Naz Divsaler, Co-Founder and CEO of Caidin Biotechnologies, a startup that aims to improve human health and performance in extreme environments, such as outer space, through biomedical advancements. Under her leadership, Caidin Biotechnologies was accepted into Canada’s First Lunar Payload Accelerator for a product that monitors and improves astronaut health on long-term spaceflight missions.

    Donya also serves the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) as a Canadian Space Ambassador and also as a consultant for the Science and Technology Expertise Development in Academia (STEDIA) group. She obtained her Bachelors of Science in Health Sciences from Simon Fraser University (SFU) after attending Debrecen Medical School in Hungary and is currently working on her Master of Science in the Aerospace Physiology Laboratory at SFU. Her graduate studies focus on examining the effects of microgravity on physiological responses in the human body. Also as part of her studies, Donya was the lead for an ESA project looking at centrifugation-induced artificial gravity as a mitigation tool for the physiological downsides of long-term spaceflight. She received a Promise Award from SSPI in 2022. Read more about Donya.

     

       

     

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  • Victoria Krisman posted an article

    In this Making Leaders podcast, we hear from Frank DiBello, President and CEO of Space Florida and one of six inductees to the

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    In this Making Leaders podcast, we hear from Frank DiBello, President and CEO of Space Florida and one of six inductees to the Space & Satellite Hall of Fame in 2022. Over a 50-year career in the business of space, Frank DiBello has served in a wide variety of roles, all of them dedicated to guiding and strengthening the aerospace industry in America. In his 13 years with Space Florida – an Independent Special District of the State of Florida – he was instrumental in the state’s recovery from the retirement of the Shuttle in 2011 and its subsequent rise to even greater heights as the thriving commercial space operations and manufacturing cluster it is today. Frank’s leadership and contributions to the advancement of the aerospace industry in Florida has positioned the state as the clear leader in a rapidly transforming aerospace market, which has set an example to many other states, such as New Mexico, Virginia, Alaska, Texas and Georgia to improve their capabilities in the marketplace as well.

    Frank began his career in the space industry at KPMG, where he spent more than 20 years guiding the firm’s aerospace industry practice. While at KPMG, he founded the firm’s Space Industry Practice to focus on new space businesses, including taking satellite programs to Wall Street for financing and developing commercial uses for the International Space Station (ISS). Frank served on President Reagan’s Private Sector Survey on Cost Control – also known as the Grace Commission – during this time, where he managed teams reviewing the Departments of the Army, Navy, Air Force, Office of the Secretary of Defense and NASA. For his work on the Grace Commission, he was awarded a Presidential Citation. Frank has been involved in a number of other civic, social and industry volunteer organizations, including the Washington Space Business Roundtable, which he founded. For his work as President of the Board of the USO Metropolitan Washington, he received the Medal for Distinguished Public Service, the Department of Defense’s highest civilian honor. Read more about Frank.

     

       

     

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    SSPI’s Making Leaders campaign is made possible with the support of our corporate partners

  • Victoria Krisman posted an article

    In this Making Leaders podcast, originally released in December 2021, SSPI Executive Director Robert Bell speaks with Donna Potter, Former...

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    In this Making Leaders podcast, originally released in December 2021, SSPI Executive Director Robert Bell speaks with Donna Potter, Former Senior Executive Director of Research and Development at Maxar Technologies, now retired, and the 2021 Mentor of the Year. Donna shares insights about mentorship, managing a team and the leadership lessons she has learned throughout her career and continues to learn even in retirement.

    Until her retirement in 2019, Donna Potter served as Senior Executive Director of Research and Development at Maxar, after she originally took on the position at Space Systems/Loral (SSL) in 2011. She managed the research and development portfolio for SSL and later Maxar, furthering the technologies the company needed to remain competitive in the GEO communication satellite market. Donna’s responsibilities included crafting strategy for new technology development and driving progress and productivity on a wide array of technical projects. Along the way, she also helped employees develop critical project management and technical leadership skills, which resulted in multiple researchers publishing technical papers and earning patents under her leadership. She was instrumental in SSL’s transition from working exclusively with commercial customers to executing government contracts, including the Spider program for in-space robotic assembly of spacecraft and the Psyche mission to explore an asteroid.

    Donna has consistently made time throughout her career to mentor others both within her companies and the industry as a whole, even taking time out for them after her retirement. As a manager, she provided frequent opportunities for her subordinates to learn more about leadership, including organizing a book club to read and discuss The Ideal Team Player. Donna has served as a role model for many women seeking to improve their leadership skills and rise through the ranks and went the extra mile with several mentees to help them adopt strategies to be taken more seriously in positions of authority. Donna was chosen as SSPI’s 2021 Mentor of the Year. Learn more about Donna.
     

    Nominations are Open for the 2022 Mentor of the Year

    Speaking of mentors and all they do for the industry, nominations are currently open for the 2022 Mentor of the Year and the 2022 “20 Under 35” cohort of young industry leaders! Click here to learn more and submit your nominations. Nominations are due by July 18, 2022.

     

       

     

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    In this Making Leaders podcast, we hear from Steve Spengler, Former CEO of Intelsat (now retired). Over a 36-year career in the space and satellite industry, Steve Spengler has dedicated himself to providing critical services to places in the world and people on the move where other telecommunications technologies cannot reach. He joined Intelsat in 2003 and served in a variety of executive roles, including sales, marketing, strategy and business development. Appointed CEO in 2015, he assumed leadership at a major inflection point for the world’s first satellite company. He oversaw the 2016 launch of the first satellite in the global Epic fleet that brought high-throughput architecture to C-, Ku- and Ka-bands, vastly increasing Intelsat’s capacity to meet exploding needs for satellite data. Through strategic investments and alliances, he expanded the company into flat panel antenna technology, LEO communications, in-flight broadband and other verticals. After years of fighting the mobile industry over access to spectrum, he changed course and proposed the sale of C-band frequencies to mobile carriers, igniting a complex regulatory and political process that led to the current C-band repack in the US. His final act before announcing his retirement was the emergence of Intelsat from Chapter 11 bankruptcy as a newly capitalized company that had shed a substantial portion of the debt heaped on it by former private equity owners and is prepared for its next wave of growth. Steve retired as CEO of Intelsat in 2022. He was inducted into the Space & Satellite Hall of Fame in the same year. Learn more about Steve.

     

       

     

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  • Victoria Krisman posted an article

    In this Making Leaders podcast, we hear from Professor Robert Twiggs, Emeritus Professor...

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    In this Making Leaders podcast, we hear from Professor Robert Twiggs, Emeritus Professor – Astronautics at Morehead State University. Prof. Twiggs is best known in the space and satellite industry and academia as the “Father of the CubeSat” for his co-development of the CubeSat reference design and P-Pod Deployer for miniaturized satellites at Stanford University, alongside Professor Jordi Puig-Suari of California Polytechnic University at San Luis Obispo. His design has become the de-facto industry standard for Pico satellites since its development in 1998, with over 1,600 successful launches to this day. Prof. Twiggs has also developed and co-developed other original concepts, including the CricketSat, CanSat, ThinSat and the PocketQube for educational applications in space.

    While at Stanford University, Prof. Twiggs began searching for the solution to a problem of academic timing for students. He was troubled by how long satellites students took to design and assemble their first satellite at Stanford – OPEL – that had taken 6 years to produce, 5 years longer than the average master’s program. Prof. Twiggs found his inspiration at a plastic store, of all places, when he realized that the perfect size for a satellite that students could make was a 4-inch cube, a beanie baby box. He proposed the idea of a CubeSat with Professor Puig-Suari at a conference in Hawaii in 1999. Prof. Twiggs was inducted into the Space & Satellite Hall of Fame in 2022. Learn more about Prof. Twiggs.

     

       

     

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  • Victoria Krisman posted an article

    Communication and earth observation satellites play an essential but too-little-known role in managing the world’s supply chains. The solutions call on spacecraft in every...

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    Communication and earth observation satellites play an essential but too-little-known role in managing the world’s supply chains. The solutions call on spacecraft in every orbit, carrying every payload and operating in every commercial frequency band. They also call on the ingenuity and determination of experts in engineering, manufacturing, operations and analytics to provide the crucial data and communications that help their customers keep the world supplied.

    In this podcast, based on the May 12 Webinar: Satellite Solutions for Supply Chain Woes, SSPI’s Robert Bell is joined by Matt Desch, CEO, Iridium Communications, Inc.; Nicole Robinson, President, Ursa Space Systems; and Jean-Michel Rouylou, Head of Enterprise and Broadband, ST Engineering iDirect to discuss satellite’s vital role in world trade and the global opportunities the industry’s unique technologies are able to tap.

    Matt Desch became CEO of Iridium Communications in 2006 after a twenty-five year career in the telecommunications industry that included serving as president of Nortel Networks’ wireless business and chief executive of Telcordia Technologies. Since taking the helm, he has led Iridium from the depths of post-bankruptcy uncertainty and looming irrelevancy into a major contributor to the space and satellite industry. Matt has also served as an advocate for safety and responsible traffic management throughout the space, satellite and aviation industries for over a decade. Three years after Matt joined Iridium, one of its spacecraft was hit by a defunct Russian satellite, Kosmos 2251. He turned a disaster into an opportunity to focus on responsibility and safety in navigation by pioneering a partnership with the US Air Force on orbit/debris coordination and highlighting Iridium’s preparations to de-orbit their original spacecraft safely without posing threats to other orbital systems. Matt’s championing of Iridium’s preparations and the U.S. government recognition that space had become a congested environment, lead to eventual improvements in orbital safety and de-commissioning precautions throughout the industry. In the same year, he also successfully led Iridium through the complicated process of going public, listing the company on the NASDAQ. Matt was inducted into the Space & Satellite Hall of Fame in 2019. Read more about Matt.

    Nicole Robinson is President of URSA Space Systems, a position she took on in February of 2021. In her previous role as Senior Vice President of Global Government for SES Networks, she was responsible for the company’s global business portfolio of government customers in the areas of defense, security, humanitarian, federal, civilian and institutional organizations. Nicole also serves as Chairman of the Board of Redu Space Services and Director of the LuxGovSat Board of Directors. She served in a variety of executive roles during her 12 years at SES, including leading teams in the areas of government product development, sales and business development, government affairs and marketing. Before joining SES, she served as leader of the Strategic Communications function for the U.S. Joint Forces Command’s Standing Joint Force Headquarters (SJFHQ). In 2012, she received a Promise Award from SSPI as a leader among the 20 Under 35. Nicole has previously served as Chair of the Board and President of SSPI.

    Jean-Michel Rouylou is Head of Enterprise and Broadband at ST Engineering iDirect, where he is responsible for the company’s Enterprise strategy with a focus on Energy, Banking and Consumer Broadband. Previously, Rouylou spent 3 years at ITC Global as the Executive Vice President for the Maritime market, where he helped the company to establish a worldwide maritime Ku-band network. Rouylou spent 20 years at Schlumberger where he held various roles in engineering, marketing and sales, including head of VSAT services in Aberdeen. Rouylou holds an engineering degree from Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Arts & Métiers in Paris.

     

       

     

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  • Victoria Krisman posted an article

    As the manufacturing of rockets and spacecraft moves from one-at-a-time craft work to rapid iteration and assembly-line production, it is...

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    As the manufacturing of rockets and spacecraft moves from one-at-a-time craft work to rapid iteration and assembly-line production, it is changing the talent needs of employers. What changes are taking place? What new career paths must be laid out to attract the best-qualified workers? And how does the company itself need to be re-imagined for a new world? In this second episode of Untangling the Supply Chain, Brad Laird, VP of Engineering at NXTCOMM and Damen Tolley, Director of Human Resources at Airbus OneWeb Satellites join SSPI’s Robert Bell to explore the shifting role of talent in a fast-changing business.

    Brad Laird is Vice President of Engineering at NXTCOMM, a position he has held for nearly a year. Before joining NXTCOMM, he served as Senior Engineering Manager at a number of other companies, including Accenture Product X.0 and the Kymeta Corporation. Brad spent nearly 16 years at Lam Research prior to joining the Kymeta Corporation, where he served as first a Product Engineer, then Senior Mechanical Engineer, before rising through the ranks to become Engineering Manager and finally Executive Level Program Manager. In 2009, while working at Lam Research, he also founded Rae’s Electric Garage in Seattle, Washington, a company designed to provide affordable electric vehicle options in an emerging market. Rae’s Electric Garage has produced multiple reliable prototype versions of an electric vehicle with a lithium battery management system since its founding, and Brad continues working in the business to this day. He began his career in the U.S. Army as a 2nd Lieutenant through Captain in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

    Damen Tolley is Human Resources Director at Airbus OneWeb Satellites, a position he has held for 1.5 years. In this position, he is fully repsonsible for all HR and EHS topics globally across the company. Damon joined OneWeb Satellites as an HR Business Partner for 1 year before taking on his current position. Prior to joining OneWeb Satellites, he served at Airbus Defence and Space for 6 years in a variety of Human Resources roles, including HR Business Partner, UK HR Projects Lead and finally Head of HR Operations UK. Damon began his career as an intern for Astrium, where he worked as HR Assistant for Policies & Projects. He is a graduate of the University of Surrey with a Bachelor of Laws (LLB).

     

       

     

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    SSPI’s Making Leaders campaign is made possible with the support of our corporate partners

  • Victoria Krisman posted an article

    When Airbus OneWeb Satellites began mass production of the OneWeb satellite constellation, it had to develop and manage a global supply chain...

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    When Airbus OneWeb Satellites began mass production of the OneWeb satellite constellation, it had to develop and manage a global supply chain that could operate at unprecedented speed to make possible the manufacturing of two satellites per day. In this first episode of the Untangling the Supply Chain podcast series, Airbus OneWeb Satellites Chief Supply Chain Officer John Meikle joins SSPI’s Robert Bell to explore how that chain was linked together and kept running – and how it copes with the major disruptions of 2020.

    John Meikle is Chief Supply Chain Officer at Airbus OneWeb Satellites, a position he has held for 8 months. In his current position, he is primarily responsible for supply chain execution and management and reports directly to the CEO. Before joining Airbus OneWeb Satellites, John served in two major supply chain manager roles, first at Northrup Grumman for 6 years where he served as both a Program Manager and Supply Chain Manager. He went on to work at Sierra Nevada Corporation for a total of 9 years, beginning in the same role as a Supply Chain Manager before rising to the roles of Program Manager, Director of Supplier Management and finally Director of Technology. John spent the first five years of his career in the U.S. Air Force, where he served as Engineering Program Manager and Developmental Engineer Electrical.

     

       

     

    Untangling the Supply Chain is underwritten by

    SSPI’s Making Leaders campaign is made possible with the support of our corporate partners

  • Victoria Krisman posted an article

    In this Making Leaders podcast, SSPI Executive Director Robert Bell speaks with Raven Moreland, Spacecraft Power Systems Engineer at Ball Aerospace and one of three Promise Award recipients in...

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    In this Making Leaders podcast, SSPI Executive Director Robert Bell speaks with Raven Moreland, Spacecraft Power Systems Engineer at Ball Aerospace and one of three Promise Award recipients in 2021. Raven shares insights about her career path, the lessons she has learned and the mentors who have helped her along the way.

    Raven joined Ball Aerospace in early 2020 as a Systems Engineer and currently serves as lead for the Electrical Power Distribution Subsystem (EPDS) on NASA’s SPHEREx program, which will conduct the first near-infrared all-sky spectral survey to study the cosmic origins of the universe and galaxies. Her contributions to the EPDS on the SPHEREx program have already proven invaluable in her 14 months spent on the project. In her first 6 months on the project, She was responsible for researching and procuring the solar array technology that will power the SPHEREx spacecraft and quickly realized that the original design exceeded the system’s mass allocation. Raven discovered a novel technology that is more efficient, smaller, lighter and more powerful for less cost than the established baseline, thereby getting the project back on track seamlessly and with added benefits. She consistently provides valuable feedback for deliverables, researches options for spacecraft components and contributes design ideas.

    Before joining Ball Aerospace, Raven served as the Lead Operations and Ground System Design Engineer for General Atomics, where she led operations on the Orbital Test Bed 1 (OTB-1) mission, the first truly commercial all hosting satellite. She was responsible for commissioning of the spacecraft, including anomaly resolution, operations logistics and user manual development, and she went on to lead and define the ground system fault detection, isolation and recovery philosophy for the OTB-2 and OTB-3 missions. Raven served as the only Operations Engineer for the OTB-1 project, wrote the satellite’s anomaly recovery procedures and was on call to solve them on the spot during and after launch. She also served as a Satellite Systems Engineer at Orbital ATK, where she performed mission operations development for geostationary (GEO) satellites and helped direct the GovSat-1 and Al Yah 3 missions. Raven received a Promise Award from SSPI in 2021 as one of three leaders of the 2021 “20 Under 35” cohort. Learn more about Raven.

     

     

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    SSPI’s Making Leaders campaign is made possible with the support of our corporate partners

  • Victoria Krisman posted an article

    In this Making Leaders podcast, SSPI Executive Director Robert Bell speaks with Kelsey Doerksen, Space Systems Engineer in Satellite Operations at Planet and one of three Promise Award...

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    In this Making Leaders podcast, SSPI Executive Director Robert Bell speaks with Kelsey Doerksen, Space Systems Engineer in Satellite Operations at Planet and one of three Promise Award recipients in 2021. Kelsey shares insights about her career path, the lessons she has learned and the mentors who have helped her along the way.

    Kelsey joined Planet in February 2020 after completing a series of internships at the Paris Observatory and NASA Jet Propulsion Lab. In her current role at Planet, she is responsible for identifying, triaging, root causing and resolving satellite anomalies and performing fleet-wide health check-ins for the largest Earth Observation satellite constellation in the world. Kelsey also has extensive experience in using Python to develop tools for autonomous satellite operations and in creating and aggregating performance metrics to provide insight into constellation health and productivity. While working at Planet, Kelsey also serves as a Paris Observatory Researcher and Summer School Lecturer, a position she has held since 2018. She is enrolled to begin her Ph.D. in Autonomous Intelligent Machines and Systems at the University of Oxford in October 2021.

    Since joining Planet, Kelsey has proved to be a dependable, creative teammate with extraordinary technical skills and social intelligence that have already produced many accomplishments. She co-led the commissioning campaign for Planet’s Flock 4S 48 SuperDove satellite launch in January 2021. Her responsibilities for the program included planning the commissioning campaign in its entirety and aggregating metrics describing the performance of the commissioning campaign and presenting the results at a company-wide meeting. Kelsey also simulated the addition of 48 new satellites to the existing Planet constellation ahead of the launch, created a dashboard to track the status of every satellite as part of the launch and wrote Python code to automate the whole process. Kelsey received a Promise Award from SSPI in 2021 as one of three leaders of the 2021 “20 Under 35” cohort. Learn more about Kelsey.

     

       

     

    This interview is also available in video format:

     

    This podcast was sponsored by

    SSPI’s Making Leaders campaign is made possible with the support of our corporate partners

  • Victoria Krisman posted an article

    In this Making Leaders podcast, SSPI Executive Director Robert Bell speaks with Sydney...

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    In this Making Leaders podcast, SSPI Executive Director Robert Bell speaks with Sydney Hamilton, Structures Stress Engineering Manager at The Boeing Company and one of three Promise Award recipients in 2021. Sydney shares insights about her career path, the lessons she has learned and the mentors who have helped her along the way.

    Sydney began her career at Boeing in 2014 as a Structural Design Engineer, a role in which she supported projects like the 777 Automated Floor Drilling Equipment Elimination & Floor Redesign project and the 777X Folding Wing-Tip Mock-Up. She also worked in the Commercial Aircraft Operations Center as a Service Engineer before moving on to become a Mechanical Systems Engineer designing, analyzing and managing projects for additively manufactured parts for space and launch systems. Sydney next took on the position of Responsible Engineering Authority (REA) for satellite reflectors, in which she led a cross-functional team to develop reflectors for multiple commercial and government programs, demonstrating rapid problem-solving skills and the ability to consistently meet aggressive deadlines and cost targets. In her current role of Structures Stress Engineering Manager, she leads a high-performing team of 18 engineers that perform critical technical analyses for all 3 major Boeing Divisions: Boeing Commercial Airplanes (BCA), Boeing Defense, Space & Security (BDS) and Boeing Global Services (BGS). While Sydney’s primary organization within the company is in BCA, her leadership spans beyond BCA products to include BDS products such as the CST-100 Starliner reusable spacecraft capsule, Space Launch System and Wideband Global SATCOM.

    Sydney has distinguished herself in many areas since joining Boeing. She became Manager of the Structural Analysis Team at Boeing just after her 30th birthday, a role in which she leads a team that provides structural analysis engineering for design, repairs and modifications for multiple Boeing programs, including satellites, rockets, manned spacecraft and commercial airplanes. As part of the Advance Design Engineering Additive Manufacturing Team, Sydney developed and maintained the largest database of additive manufacturing analyses at Boeing. Sydney received a Promise Award from SSPI in 2021 as one of three leaders of the 2021 “20 Under 35” cohort. Learn more about Sydney.

     

     

    This podcast is also available in video format:

     

    This podcast was sponsored by

    SSPI’s Making Leaders campaign is made possible with the support of our corporate partners

  • Victoria Krisman posted an article

    In this Making Leaders podcast, SSPI Executive Director Robert Bell speaks with Donna Potter, Former Senior Executive Director of Research and Development...

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    In this Making Leaders podcast, SSPI Executive Director Robert Bell speaks with Donna Potter, Former Senior Executive Director of Research and Development at Maxar Technologies, now retired, and the 2021 Mentor of the Year. Donna shares insights about mentorship, managing a team and the leadership lessons she has learned throughout her career and continues to learn even in retirement.

    Until her retirement in 2019, Donna Potter served as Senior Executive Director of Research and Development at Maxar, after she originally took on the position at Space Systems/Loral (SSL) in 2011. She managed the research and development portfolio for SSL and later Maxar, furthering the technologies the company needed to remain competitive in the GEO communication satellite market. Donna’s responsibilities included crafting strategy for new technology development and driving progress and productivity on a wide array of technical projects. Along the way, she also helped employees develop critical project management and technical leadership skills, which resulted in multiple researchers publishing technical papers and earning patents under her leadership. She was instrumental in SSL’s transition from working exclusively with commercial customers to executing government contracts, including the Spider program for in-space robotic assembly of spacecraft and the Psyche mission to explore an asteroid.

    Donna has consistently made time throughout her career to mentor others both within her companies and the industry as a whole, even taking time out for them after her retirement. As a manager, she provided frequent opportunities for her subordinates to learn more about leadership, including organizing a book club to read and discuss The Ideal Team Player. Donna has served as a role model for many women seeking to improve their leadership skills and rise through the ranks and went the extra mile with several mentees to help them adopt strategies to be taken more seriously in positions of authority. Donna was chosen as SSPI’s 2021 Mentor of the Year. Learn more about Donna.

     

       

     

    This podcast is also available in video format:

     

    SSPI’s Making Leaders campaign is made possible with the support of our corporate partners