1) How did you get started in the satellite business?
In high school, I had an interest in engineering and space and thought the satellite industry was a great way to cover both interests. During my senior year in college, the aerospace/satellite industry was recruiting heavily and I felt this was my opportunity to pursue my interests.
2) How have you been involved in changes brought about in or by this business (innovations, technologies, services)?
Space Systems/Loral manufactures satellites which serve multiple missions and coverages, provides high power applications, and services high frequency bands. I have been lucky enough to design, analyze, and test these types of satellites.
3) What do you think was the greatest event/situation/opportunity you experienced?
My greatest experience as a whole was the first time I completed a payload from inception to delivery - design and analysis phase through system level integration and test, then finally to in-orbit test. In satellite manufacturing at SS/L, you cannot take any shortcuts. Everything you do must always be highly reliable, meticulous, and redundant. My role allows me ownership to provide a fully validated product thus giving me a great sense of accomplishment.
4) What was the greatest obstacle?
My greatest obstacle was one that initially stretched my skills. I was new to the company and very green as I was just transitioning to payload systems engineering. I was immediately assigned to monitor a European payload subcontractor. Not only was it a technical challenge in terms of payload systems design and integration, but it was also a new challenge to actually manage a subcontractor. There were cultural differences to deal with and export control laws to adhere to. I also spent nearly 6 months in Europe monitoring the subcontractor which was a bit challenging to my personal life. However, with solid support from my team and other company resources, I was able to successfully deliver the payload compliant to performance and schedule. As a result, I gained technical and management skills and great partnerships with teams here and abroad. I would not trade the experience.
5) What do you see happening in the next five years in this industry?
I think there will continue to be a global need for satellite communications providing more digital broadcasting and to even more remote areas.
6) What advice do you have for women interested in entering the industry?
Do not limit yourself. There are many opportunities in the industry as there are so many different disciplines and aspects to building a satellite. My advice is to not just gain practical technical skills, but to also cultivate interpersonal skills with peers and management. Be open to new responsibilities and challenges early on and if possible, find a mentor.
Women in Space
Audrey Allison, Dir., Frequency Management Services, Boeing Shared Services Group
Anita Antenucci, Managing Dir. Houlihan Lokey's Aerospace-Defense-Government
Dr. Wanda M. Austin Pres. & CEO, The Aerospace Corporation
Julie Bannerman, Gen.Counsel, Space Systems/Loral, Inc.
Sharri Berg, Senior V.P., News Operations, Fox News
Leslie Blaker, DataPath, Inc.
Yvonne Brill, Consultant, Satellite Tech. & Space Propulsion Systems
Michelle Bryan, Senior V.P., Human Resources, Intelsat
Dr. Angie Bukley, Ph.D., Electrical Engineering
Catherine Chang, General Counsel & Asst. Company Secretary, AsiaSat
Sabrina Cubbon, Gen. Manager, Marketing, AsiaSat
Yvette Dominguez, Manager, Payload Design Engineering Section, Space Systems/Loral, Inc.
Chris Ehrenbard, Dir., Broadcast Distribution, CBS
Mary Ann Elliot, Chairman of the Board, Arrowhead Global Solutions, Inc.
Celeste Ford, Founder & CEO, Stellar Solutions, Inc.
Mary Frost, former CEO, GlobeCast America
Eilene Galloway, NASA Pioneer
Carmen González-Sanfeliu, V.P., Latin America & Caribbean, Intelsat
Dawn Harms, V.P., Marketing & Sales, Space Systems/Loral, Inc.
Ellen Hoff, Pres., W.L. Pritchard & Co., L.C.
Polly Rash Hollis, Satellite Industry Professional
Britt Horncastle, Satellite Consultant
Susan Irwin, Pres., Irwin Communications, Inc.
Barbara Jaffe, Senior V.P., Advanced Technology and Operations, HBO
Christine King, Deputy V.P., Technical Services & Engineering, Lockheed Martin
Betsy Kulick, Newsletter Editor & Corporate Secretary, Mobile Satellite Users Association
Penelope Longbottom, Founder & Pres., Longbottom Communications
Joanne Maguire, Exec. V.P., Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company
Andrea Maléter, Technical Dir., Futron Corporation
Joan T. Mancuso, Founder & Executive, Broadband International LLC
Dolores Martos, V.P., Sales for Latin America & Caribbean, SES Americom - SES New Skies
Brig. Gen. Susan K. Mashiko, Vice Commander, Space & Missile Systems Center, L.A. Air Force Base
Eileen McGowan, Corporate Strategy & Planning, Intelsat
Olwen Morgan, Development Engineer
Bridget Neville, V.P. & Gen. Manager, Satellite Engineering & Operations, Sirius XM Radio
Christine Paape, V.P., Space Explorers, Inc.
Rhonda Parson, Manager, Occasional-Use Sales & Traffic Division, EchoStar Satellite Services
Maj. Gen. Ellen M. Pawlikowski, Deputy Dir., National Reconnaissance Office
Jane Petro, Kennedy Space Center Deputy Director
Dr. Nongluck Phinainitisart, D.Eng., Pres., Thaicom PLC
Mary Quagliotti, Retired Major General, Army
Radhika Ramachandran, Ph.D., Counsellor (SPACE) & Technical Liaison Officer
Veena Rawat, Pres., Communications Research Centre, Canada
Joslyn Read, V.P., Regulatory Affairs, SES Americom - SES New Skies
Walda Roseman, Founder & CEO, CompassRose International, Inc.
Farah Suhanah Ahmad Sarji, General Counsel, MEASAT
Jacqueline Schenkel, Founder, Schenkel & Associates, LLC
Kay Sears, Pres., Intelsat General
Gwynne Shotwell, Pres., SpaceX
Marcia Smith, Pres., Space Technology Policy Group, LLC
Pascale Sourisse, Gen. Manager, Land & Joint Systems Division, Thales
Andy Steinem, CEO, Dahl-Morrow International
Nicole P. Stott, Astronaut, NASA
Bambi Taskarelli, Voice/Data Engineer, NBCU
Leslie Taylor, Strategic Planning Division Office of Spectrum Management, NTIA, U.S. Dept. of Commerce
Synette Tom, Marketing Dir., Sales, Space Systems/Loral, Inc.
Marjorie Rhodes Townsend, Satellite Communications Consultant
Diane Tryneski, Senior V.P., Broadcast & Studio Operations, HBO
Diane VanBeber, V.P., Investor Relations, Corporate & Marketing Communications, Intelsat
Barbara Warren, Systems Analyst, International Telecommunication Union
Zhang Yan, Gen. Manager, CITICSat and Chief Rep., Asiasat