Schriever Chair

schriever chair ARDI


The Bernard A. Schriever Chair in Space Systems Engineering is endowed by a gift to ARDI by the Emerson Electric Co. in honor of Bernard A. Schriever (Gen, USAF, Retired). Air Force Magazine (October 2000) headlined Gen Schriever as the “man who built the missiles,” and described him as “unquestionably one of the most important officers in Air Force history,” who ranks alongside the legendary Hap Arnold and Curtis LeMay in terms of long-term effect upon the service and the nation. Foremost among his many achievements was the development and acquisition of a reliable and operational ICBM force in the 1950s and early 1960s. It was a towering accomplishment—one that helped propel the United States to military dominance in space. In April 1957, his image appeared on the cover of Time magazine, which called him “America’s Missileman.” His official Air Force biography proclaims that Schriever is “the architect of the Air Force’s ballistic missile and military space program.”


Gary Payton

Gary Payton serves as a Distinguished Visiting Professor in the Schriever Chair in Space Systems Engineering. Mr. Payton earned his Bachelor of Science degree in astronautics from the U.S. Air Force Academy and his Master of Science degree in aeronautical and astronautical engineering from Purdue University. As an Air Force officer, he served as a pilot, instructor pilot, spacecraft operations director and space technology manager. In 1985, he flew as a payload specialist on board the Space Shuttle Discovery in the first military flight of the space shuttle program.

Mr. Payton retired from the Air Force in the rank of Colonel after more than 23 years of service. He has also served as NASA’s Deputy Associate Administrator for Space Transportation Technology where he initiated, planned, and led the X-33, X-34, X-37 and DC-XA flight test projects. For two years he was the Senior Vice President of Engineering and Operations for ORBIMAGE, now Geo Eye, a leading global provider of Earth imagery products and services.

Mr. Payton returned to government service as the Deputy for Advanced Systems in the Missile Defense Agency. Until 2005 he led the MDA technology program to enhance ballistic missile defense sensor, weapon and battle management capabilities. From 2005 until 2010 he was the Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force for Space Programs. He provided guidance, direction and oversight for the formulation, review and execution of military space programs.


Department of Astronautics


2005-2010: Mr. William “Bill” Saylor
2000-2002: Ron Humble


Emerson Electric