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MDA News Release

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Dr. Michael Griffin Receives Ronald Reagan Missile Defense Award

14-NEWS-0004
May 30, 2014

Dr. Michael Griffin, former Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), is the recipient of the 2014 Ronald Reagan Missile Defense Award for his meritorious achievements in missile defense and space. Vice Admiral James D. Syring, Missile Defense Agency director, presented Dr. Griffin with the award during the Ronald Reagan Missile Defense Forum held May 14 at Fort Belvoir, Va.

Dr. Griffin has more than four decades of service and commitment as a government official and private citizen to advancing the development and deployment of critical ballistic missile defense and national space capabilities.

In support of the Strategic Defense Initiative Organization, as a member of the John Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory, he helped design the first space-to-space intercept of a ballistic missile in powered flight, known as the Delta 180 mission, one of a series of early missile defense technology space tests. These tests demonstrated for the first time the feasibility of boost-phase intercept using space-based platforms, the tracking and discrimination of mid-course objects, and the detection and tracking of ICBMs from launch.

His early career included government service as both chief engineer and associate administrator for exploration at NASA and, in 1989, as the Deputy for Technology at the Strategic Defense Initiative Organization, a predecessor organization to today's Missile Defense Agency.

From 2005 to 2009, Dr. Griffin served as the eleventh administrator for NASA. Today, as the chairman and chief executive officer at Schafer Corporation, Dr. Griffin continues to provide innovative engineering and technology to both government and private sector national security and aerospace organizations.

Dr. Griffin has provided expert technological advice and consultation to the Missile Defense Agency through serving on executive review panels and failure review boards in support of the Ground-based Midcourse Defense program and the Ballistic Missile Defense System flight test program. He also was a participant in the Update to the BMD Vision which was presented to the commander of the U.S. Strategic Command.

The Missile Defense Agency is honored to award Dr. Griffin with the 2014 Ronald Reagan Missile Defense Award for his ground-breaking research in complex engineering systems and in recognition of his vision and outstanding leadership in the development of ballistic missile defense and space technologies.