U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville has new leader
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U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville. (Paul Gattis | [email protected])

The U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville has a new leader.

The Alabama Space Science Exhibit Commission announced Tuesday that Dr. Kimberly Robinson has been chosen executive director and CEO of the museum.

Robinson is currently NASA’s utilization manager for advanced exploration systems and was previously the payload mission manager for Artemis I, the first integrate flight test of NASA’s Orion spacecraft, the Space Launch System rocket and the Exploration Ground Systems at Kennedy Space Center.

kimberly robinson
Dr. Kimberly Robinson was named executive director and CEO at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville on Dec. 15, 2020. (Submitted photo)

She is a 31-year NASA veteran and will assume her role at the rocket center on Feb. 15, 2021.

“Along with her vast experience with NASA, Dr. Robinson brings an innovative spirit and the leadership skills needed to guide the Rocket Center as we plan for the future,” Joe Newberry, ASSEC board chairman, said in the announcement. “Her energy and enthusiasm are contagious and brought her to the top of a rigorous and exhaustive search for our new executive director and CEO.”

Robinson will replace Louie Ramirez, who has led the museum since January 2020 following the retirement of Deborah Barnhart. Ramirez will remain with the rocket center in a part-time capacity as chief operations officer to assist Robinson transition to her new role.

Robinson completed her doctorate and master’s degrees in Engineering Management and Systems Engineering at the University of Alabama in Huntsville and her Bachelor of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering from Vanderbilt University.

“I look forward to joining the remarkable team at the U.S. Space & Rocket Center to inspire our next generation of explorers,” Robinson said in the announcement. “The Rocket Center is a vital part of our community that honors the Rocket City’s storied accomplishments and helps shape tomorrow’s space industry. I am excited to bring my knowledge and experience from three decades in the field of space exploration to the Rocket Center and help plan for our vibrant future.”


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