Senior Aeronautical Engineer and Developmental Test Pilot
A senior aeronautical engineer who served 20 years in the Navy as a proven aviator with four operational cruises & 500 traps. He has over 27 years of developmental test pilot experience, and an accident free career with over 5300 hours. His certificates include ATP, Commercial Pilot: MEL, SEL, and Commercial Glider. His most recent experience is as chief test pilot for commercial space vehicles.
Flight Time (Military ~ 4,000 / Commercial ~1,400)
Total Time ................5400 Total Instruments .......1350 F/A-18 .......... 1492
Pilot-in-Command ....3610 Actual Instruments .......675 A-7 ............... 1579
Multiengine Jet .........2625 Night ............................790 A-6 ................. 186
Single Engine Jet ......1880 Single Engine Prop ......360 A-4 / T-2 ........ 522
Roton / WhiteKnightOne / SpaceShipOne / WhiteKnightTwo / SpaceShipTwo / Proteus / Long-Ez / Firebird / Boomerang / Beech Duchess / Grumman Tiger / Extra 300 / Beech Star Ship / Adam Aircraft
• 20 years as a Naval Aviator (1978-1998). Never out of the cockpit. Graduate of USN TPS Class 93. Four operational tours (A-7 & F-18) & 500 traps. Participated in all of Desert Shield / Desert Storm / Southern Watch.
• Test pilot tours at all the Navy’s RTD&E facilities – China Lake / PAX River / Point Mugu. While at Point Mugu, applied for and was selected as an AEDO his last 6 years in the Navy.
• Handpicked as the Navy’s developmental test pilot for the ambitious TSSAM program. Orchestrated and launched all the missiles from both the A-6E and F/A-18C.
• 1997 test pilot of the year at Point Mugu. Flight tested the electronic warfare suites of our foreign military F/A-18 customers. Developed country-specific training programs and travelled to Finland, Malaysia, Italy (AV-8B), Switzerland, and Australia to teach same.
• 1998-2000. Joined Rotary Rocket and flew their Roton vehicle on its three flights and 5 takeoffs and landings. It was a “revolutionary” rocket concept that was intended to land as a helicopter vice an airplane.
• 2000-2004. Was asked by Burt Rutan to join his company, Scaled Composites, and flew the first and final powered flights of SpaceShipOne. The latter of which set four world records (still standing today), won the $10M X-Prize, beat the long-standing altitude record of the X-15 and won the attention and financial interest of Sir Richard Branson to develop SpaceShipTwo.
• 2004-2014. Worked with Virgin Galactic for over 10 years and piloted many flights in both SS2 and WK2.
• 2014-2016. Hired in as the senior test pilot and later chief test pilot for XCOR’s Lynx vehicle. Created some significant design changes concerning flight controls, cockpit layout and an unconventional but much more forgiving way to fly the vehicle
For all the above private ventures, in addition to being a sounding board for engineering design decisions and test pilot, he also wrote all the pilot manuals, normal and emergency procedures (Roton / WhiteKnightOne / SpaceShipOne / WhiteKnightTwo / SpaceShipTwo / Lynx) and have been heavily involved in the FAA’s certification / permitting and licensing requirements. During the period 2000-2014, he also was the single point of contact to Paul Allen and Richard Branson for all matters concerning cost / schedule and performance.
• 1986 US Navy – JAG (legal) investigation of alleged theft of avionics from a “sister” squadron during cruise. Concluded no such theft occurred and all charges dropped.
• 1992 US Navy – JAG (legal) investigation of an inadvertent ejection from an F/A-18 as the pilot was egressing from the aircraft after normal arrested landing and tie down. Conclusions were accepted by all concerned.
• 2007 Scaled Composites – appointed as the lead investigator into the ground accident of SS2’s oxidizer tank – an event that killed three and sent three more into hospital and protracted rehab for about a year. All recommendations were subsequently accepted and adopted for the continuation of the program.
• Princeton University, Princeton NJ, M.Sc. Aeronautical Engineering
Thesis: Direct Side Force Control in the Landing Phase (Elected to AIAA) 1976 – 1978
• Brown University, Providence RI, M.Sc. Fluid Dynamics & Thermodynamics
Thesis: Thermally Stratified Shear Layer in Convective Turbulence (Elected Sigma Xi) 1975 – 1976
• Brown University, Providence RI, B. Sc. (Honors) Aerospace Engineering
Thesis: Ballistic Missile Trajectory Shaping Via Base Drag Control 1971 - 1975
• Jul 11–Jul 11, Flight Safety Int’l, Long Beach, King Air Refresher Training
• Jun 10–Jul 10, Flight Safety Int’l, Long Beach, King Air Initial Training
• May 02–Jun 02, Minden, Nevada, Commercial Glider Rating
• Feb 99–May 99, Orbic Helicopters, Hughes 300C Private Pilot Training
• Jan 98–Feb 98, Flight Safety Int’l, San Antonio, Metro III Refresher Training
• Jan 97–Feb 97, Flight Safety Int’l, San Antonio, Metro III Initial Training
• Aug 96–Nov 96, Defense System Management School, Advance Program Manger’s Course
• Jun 96–Jun 96, Defense Acquisition University, Advance Test & Evaluation
• Mar 96–Apr 96, U.S. Navy Post Graduate School, Intermediate Test & Evaluation
• Jan 96–Feb 96, Defense Acquisition University, Intermediate Program Management
• Aug 89–Nov 89, U.S. Navy Post Graduate School, Aviation Safety Officer Course
• Jun 87–Jun 88, U.S. Navy Test Pilot School, Test Pilot Training
Awards and Honors
• Collier Trophy
• Aviation Week Laurel
• SETP Kincheloe Award
• Distinguished Service Medal
• Combat Air Medal
• Strike Air Medal (2 awards)
• Combat Commendation
• Navy Commendation
• Navy Achievement
• Aberdeen Univ Hon Doctorate
• Princeton Phillips Fellowship
• Elected Member Sigma Xi
• Elected Member SETP
• Elected Member AIAA
• Harvard Book Prize
• President National Honors Society
• Navy “Iron Man”
• All New England Soccer Team
• Junior Judo Champion