United Launch Alliance (ULA) announced today (Jan. 16, 2012) that Mike Leinbach has joined the company as the Director of Human Spaceflight Operations.
"We are fortunate to have Mike with his wealth of human spaceflight experience join the ULA team," George Sowers, ULA's vice president of Business Development, said. "His background in leading overall space shuttle launch activities for more than a decade, executing 37 space shuttle launches, will be invaluable as we develop human spaceflight capabilities for our Atlas and Delta systems."
Prior to joining ULA, Leinbach had a distinguished 27-year career with NASA at Kennedy Space Center. Beginning in 2000, he led the launch team for all space shuttle missions, serving as the final "go" for launch, and as the senior operations expert for all flight elements and ground support equipment processing.
"With ULA having been selected as the launch vehicle of choice for three of the four Commercial Crew Development companies, Mike's expertise in human launch systems provides a strong synergy in bringing together two world-class launch cultures," said Jerry Jamison, vice president of Launch Operations.
Leinbach has been honored with numerous awards including the 2004 Presidential Rank Award, NASA's Exceptional Service Medal and NASA's Medal for Outstanding Leadership.
Leinbach holds a Bachelor of Science degree in architecture and a Master of Engineering in civil engineering with emphasis in structural dynamics from the University of Virginia.
United Launch Alliance program management, engineering, test and mission support functions are headquartered in Denver, Colo. Manufacturing, assembly and integration operations are located at Decatur, Ala., Harlingen, Texas, San Diego, Calif. Launch operations are located at Cape Canaveral AFS, Fla., and Vandenberg AFB, Calif.