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 Flight Projects Directorate


FPD Executive Management is responsible for the management and delivery of GSFC flight project missions and mission support, including...

  • 10 space flight and ground system projects in study/formulation
  • 25 in development/implementation
  • More than 30 operational on-orbit satellites)

Executive leadership is directly involved with many NASA programs (Living With a Star, Solar Terrestrial Probes, Earth Science, Joint Polar Satellite System, Physics of the Cosmos, Cosmic Origins, Reimbursable, New Frontiers, Discovery, Mars, and Earth Science Technology. In addition, leadership plans major Earth, Space Science, and Communications satellite missions; develops make-or-buy strategies; develops/implements acquisitions within Federal policies to ensure maximum value; and reviews technical/programmatic progress against plans, providing essential spaceflight development experience to keep programs/projects on track, including GSFC's flagship mission, James Webb Space Telescope.

  • Dave Mitchell

    Dave Mitchell : Director

    In April 2015 Dave Mitchell was selected as the Director of the Flight Projects Directorate (FPD) at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC).

    Mr. Mitchell began his career in 1984 with the Department of Navy testing solid rocket motor systems. In 1987, he joined GSFC. His early work focused on expendable launch vehicles, including the successful Delta launches of the Mars Global Surveyor and Mars Pathfinder missions. In 2005, he accepted a series of details to develop strategic planning initiatives for NASA at the Kennedy Space Center and Headquarters, following he worked as a NASA Congressional Fellow in the office of U.S. Senator Nelson. In late 2006, Mr. Mitchell returned to GSFC to become the Deputy Associate Director of the Earth Science Projects Division; concurrently, he served as the project manager for a proposal effort for the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution (MAVEN) mission, later becoming the project manager.

    He was twice awarded NASA's Outstanding Leadership medal for his notable leadership excellence for MAVEN (2014) and Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) (2006). He received various NASA and GSFC awards on the Cosmic Background Explorer project, Orbital Launch Services project, GOES, and MAVEN (1990-present). Mr. Mitchell holds a Bachelor's of Science in Mechanical Engineering from State University of New York at Buffalo, NY, and a Master's of Science in Engineering Administration from George Washington University, Washington, DC.

  • Tom McCarthy

    Tom McCarthy: Deputy Director

    In June 2015 Tom was selected as the Deputy Director of the Flight Projects Directorate (FPD) at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC).

    Mr. McCarthy has 36 years of experience in the Aerospace industry with more than half this time spent with General Dynamics/Lockheed Missiles & Space /GE/RCA/Martin Marietta/Lockheed Martin in the Thermal Systems as well as the Systems Integration & Test disciplines. He joined NASA GSFC in 2001 as the Chief Technology Engineer for the Thermal Engineering Branch, served as the Applied Engineering & Technology Directorate Chief Engineer from 2005 thru 2007; as the Division Chief for the Mission Engineering and Systems Analysis Division from 2007 to 2010; as the Deputy Associate Director for Earth Science Projects from 2010 to 2013 and as the Associate Director for Earth Science Projects at GSFC as well as the Program Manager for both the Earth Systematic Missions Program and the Reimbursable Projects Program at NASA HQ from 2013 to 2015.

    He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Gannon College, a Master's degree in Mechanical Engineering from Villanova University, a MBA in International Business from the Philadelphia College of Textiles & Science, and he is a registered Professional Engineer in the states of Maryland and Pennsylvania.

  • Wanda Peters

    Wanda Peters : Deputy Director for Planning and Business Management

    Dr. Wanda Peters has extensive professional experience working for the federal government and private industry. She has 34 years of scientific and engineering experience, including 20 years of technical management experience. Throughout her professional career, Wanda Peters has had the privilege of serving in numerous positions that utilized her leadership skills to lead high-performing teams and direct strategic initiatives. She has worked in the areas of: flight project management, business resource management, mechanical systems engineering, space technology development; and safety and mission assurance. Her professional development and career have progressed through the following positions: research scientist, aerospace engineer, engineering discipline lead, product team lead, Principal Investigator, technology development team lead, group manager, Contract Officer's Representative (COR), Source Evaluation Board (SEB) Chair, Assistant Division Chief, Associate Division Chief, and Associate Director. Presently, she serves as the Deputy Director for Planning and Business Management in the Flight Projects Directorate (FPD) at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center.

    Dr. Wanda Peters has completed the 2015-2016 NASA Senior Executive Service (SES) Candidate Development Program. She is a Senior Executive Fellow and graduate of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. Wanda Peters has authored and co-authored over 15 publications. Wanda Peters is a mentor and advocates for diversity and inclusion in the workplace. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology from the University of Maryland-Eastern Shore; a Bachelor of Engineering degree from the Catholic University of America; and a Master of Engineering Management degree and a Doctor of Philosophy in Systems Engineering from George Washington University. She is married and has two daughters.

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Web Curator: Jennifer Brill
NASA Official: Wanda Peters