Systems Engineering Seminar

Implementation of the Engineering Technical Authority at GSFC

Presented by: Orlando Figueroa
Director of Applied Engineering and Technology, Code 500
NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center

June 6, 2006, 1:00 p.m.
Building 3 Auditorium

Implementation of the Engineering Technical Authority at GSFC

Mr. Figueroa will discuss the implementation of the Engineering Technical Authority at GSFC in response to the Agency’s Engineering Excellence initiative.



Photo of Figueroa Mr. Figueroa was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico in September 9, 1955. He obtained a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez Campus in 1978, and completed advanced courses in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Maryland. He received an honorary doctorate degree in science from Dominican College in New York in 2004.

Mr. Figueroa has been a U.S. Government Senior Executive since 1996, with experience in the management of complex multi-project programs with total budgets in excess of $4 billion. Throughout his career he has demonstrated a record of consistent achievements in the planning, design, development and oversight of multi-faceted scientific space missions. Well versed in interacting with multiple national and international government and non-government organizations, and considered a highly competent strategist and director of scientific systems and technology. Mr. Figueroa is fully bilingual in English and Spanish.

In October 2005, Orlando was selected as the Director of Applied Engineering and Technology, Code 500, at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.

His past experiences include a brief term as Director for System Safety and Mission Assurance at the Goddard Space Flight Center, the following positions at NASA headquarters: Deputy Associate Administrator for Programs in the Science Mission Directorate, Director for the Solar System Exploration Division, Director for Mars Exploration, and NASA Deputy Chief Engineer for Systems Engineering. Experience prior to NASA headquarters include 22 years at the Goddard Space Flight Center as: Director of Systems Technology and Advanced Concepts Directorate, Head of the Cryogenics Technology Section; Lead Cryogenic Engineer for the Cosmic Background Explorer mission; manager for the Superfluid Helium On Orbit Transfer (SHOOT) Shuttle Experiment; Manager for the Small Explorers (SMEX) project; Explorers Program Manager; and Director of Systems, Technology and Advanced Concepts.

Throughout his career, Mr. Figueroa has received numerous awards. Among them are: Distinguished (2004) and Meritorious (2000) Presidential Rank Awards for sustained extraordinary accomplishment in management of programs of the United States Government, and for leadership exemplifying the highest standards of service to the public, reflecting credit on the career civil service; NASA Outstanding Leadership Medals in 1993 and 2004; the 2004 Community Stars Award from the Maryland Science Week Commission, for his work and support of innovative education programs between NASA, industry and Maryland Schools; the 2002 Pioneer Award from the Hispanic Engineer National Achievement Awards Corporation for his contribution to the advancement of science and technology and for promoting the education of our youth; Hispanic Business Magazine, one the most influential Hispanics in the Nation in 2004 and 2005. He is the author of several technical publications in the field of cryogenics, the SMEX missions, and the Mars Exploration Program.

Mr. Figueroa lives in Silver Spring, Maryland, with his wife, Josephine, and two sons, Daniel and Alexis.


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