In 2015, 30 years after joining the company as an intern, Dennis Muilenburg rose through the ranks to the become the CEO, chairman, and CEO of The Boeing Company. Prior to becoming the corporation’s top executive, he served as the vice chairman, COO and executive vice president of the company and the president and CEO of Boeing Defense, Space & Security (BDS).
“Within a decade, you’re going to see low-Earth-orbit space travel become much more commonplace,” Dennis said in an interview with GeekWire. “Not only going to the International Space Station, as we will today, but also other destinations in space. Space tourism, space factories … that whole ecosystem is evolving, and we’ll be deeply involved in the transportation system that will enable access.”
One of the largest aircraft manufacturers in the world, Boeing also designs and produces satellites, missiles, rockets, and rotocraft. Formerly known as the Boeing Integrated Defense Systems, the company’s BDS division is the second largest defense contractor in the world. In 2010, along with companies such as Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman Corporation, BDS was chosen by NASA to be considered for contract awards with heavy lift launch vehicle systems and propulsion technologies.
“You might have hypersonic vehicles traveling at higher speed through the same airspace. And then to get space vehicles into orbit, you need launch corridors for these space vehicles,” Dennis explained. “So, that all needs an integrated traffic system. That’s part of what we’re working on with NASA and the FAA.”
Boeing’s commercial launch service provider, Boeing Launch Services Inc. (BLS), administers services for Delta II and IV launches.
Dennis completed a bachelor’s in aerospace engineering at Iowa State University and a master’s in aeronautics and astronautics at the University of Washington.