William J. Pomerantz

Vice President and Commercial Space Exploration in Los Angeles, California

William J. Pomerantz

Vice President and Commercial Space Exploration in Los Angeles, California

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At work: I am Vice President for Special Projects at Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Orbit, the innovative launch company for small satellites. Working with in the same role at Virgin Galactic from 2011 - 2017, I helped start Virgin Orbit, as part of my remit to extend Virgin Galactic's efforts beyond space tourism.

Outside of work: I am the Chair of the Board of Advisors of SEDS-USA, the world's largest student space organization, and Co-Founder of the Brooke Owens Fellowship Program, a prestigious mentorship and work experience program for women pursuing aerospace careers. I'm also a member of the Editorial Board of ROOM, a Space Journal, among other activities. In addition to countless presentations I've given on behalf of my employers, I've given a TEDx talk explaining why humans explore space. I'm a working father. My amazing wife is Diana Trujillo, a Mission Lead and the Deputy Project Systems Engineer for the Mars Curiosity Mission at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

In the past: I'm a graduate of Harvard, the NASA Academy, and the International Space University. From 2005 - 2011, I worked at the XPRIZE Foundation, serving as the primary author and manager of the $30 million Google Lunar XPRIZE and the $2 million Northrop Grumman Lunar Lander XCHALLENGE. I've also worked at Brown University, the Futron Corporation, and the United Nations, among others. I was the co-founder and Editor-in-Chief of SpaceAlumni.com, an early social network for space professionals. I have served on a US Federal Advisory Committees, on for the National Academies of Science and Engineering and one for the Federal Aviation Administration.

  • Work
    • Virgin Orbit
  • Education
    • Harvard University
    • NASA Academy
    • International Space University