Author Topic: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase  (Read 12930 times)

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Old thread for Kathy Leuders updates and discussion: Kathy Lueders: new Associate Administrator for Human Exploration and Operations.  That thread now includes the news of her recent retirement from NASA.

Post updates and discussion of her new job in this thread.



https://twitter.com/thesheetztweetz/status/1658127208932679681

Quote
Scoop – @KathyLueders, former top NASA human spaceflight official, joined SpaceX, according to CNBC sources.

Lueders is based at Starbase in Texas and will report directly to president & COO Gwynne Shotwell:

https://www.cnbc.com/2023/05/15/elon-musks-spacex-hires-former-nasa-official-kathy-lueders.html
« Last Edit: 05/17/2023 03:00 am by zubenelgenubi »

Offline Tomness

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #1 on: 05/15/2023 03:14 pm »
https://twitter.com/thesheetztweetz/status/1658127208932679681

Quote
Scoop – @KathyLueders, former top NASA human spaceflight official, joined SpaceX, according to CNBC sources.

Lueders is based at Starbase in Texas and will report directly to president & COO Gwynne Shotwell:

https://www.cnbc.com/2023/05/15/elon-musks-spacex-hires-former-nasa-official-kathy-lueders.html

Gwen is a rock star for this grab. Bravo Gwen & Congrats 👏 Kathy

Online Robotbeat

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #2 on: 05/15/2023 03:28 pm »
Gwynne, not Gwen, but yup.

It should be noted that SpaceX now directly employs almost as many people as NASA. Over 12,000 SpaceX employees and under 18,000 NASA civil servants.

If you count only space related civil servants (not aeronautics or Earth science, etc), SpaceX probably has more employees.
« Last Edit: 05/15/2023 03:31 pm by Robotbeat »
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Offline M.E.T.

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #3 on: 05/15/2023 03:45 pm »
Awesome news.

Online Robotbeat

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #4 on: 05/15/2023 03:49 pm »
It strikes me as a tone change at Starbase. No longer cowboy rocketry and exploding prototypes but a maturing space launch system with adults in charge. Scarily competent adults (who also aren’t bought into “defense contractors always know best”).
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

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Offline M.E.T.

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #5 on: 05/15/2023 04:11 pm »
It strikes me as a tone change at Starbase. No longer cowboy rocketry and exploding prototypes but a maturing space launch system with adults in charge. Scarily competent adults (who also aren’t bought into “defense contractors always know best”).

Agree on the steady maturation of the program. It was inevitable once they progressed far enough.

Not sure who the “adults” above are being juxtaposed against, though. There always has been - and will be - only one person in charge overall. A person who happens to trust and respect Gwynne and, from what I read, Kathy too, greatly.

What an awesome team.

Online Robotbeat

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #6 on: 05/15/2023 04:30 pm »
I meant managing Starbase in particular, not the overall company.
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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #7 on: 05/15/2023 04:50 pm »
Kathy Leuders and Gwynne Shotwell are, I think, almost exactly the same age, about 59. They probably will get along well.
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

To the maximum extent practicable, the Federal Government shall plan missions to accommodate the space transportation services capabilities of United States commercial providers. US law http://goo.gl/YZYNt0

Offline RedLineTrain

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #8 on: 05/15/2023 04:56 pm »
Interesting.  Would she be on the payload/ship side rather than the rocket side?  As in, she would not be in charge of all of Starbase.

Online mn

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #9 on: 05/15/2023 05:06 pm »
IIRC it was Kathy that got SpaceX the CRS contract, which essentially saved SpaceX at the time.

It could be fair to say without Kathy SpaceX may not have survived.

https://arstechnica.com/science/2016/04/without-nasa-there-would-be-no-spacex-and-its-brilliant-boat-landing/

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That fall and early winter marked the darkest hours for the cash-strapped Musk, as both SpaceX and Tesla spent hundreds of millions of dollars on development, with little revenue to show for it ... The economy worsened that fall, and by December, Musk's money had run out and he'd tapped all the loans he could.

Then, two days before Christmas of 2008, NASA announced it was awarding commercial cargo contracts to Orbital Sciences  for 19 flights and SpaceX for 12 flights ... That contract allowed SpaceX to finish the Falcon 9 rocket and build the Dragon spacecraft

Offline Jim

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #10 on: 05/15/2023 05:15 pm »
Gwynne, not Gwen, but yup.

It should be noted that SpaceX now directly employs almost as many people as NASA. Over 12,000 SpaceX employees and under 18,000 NASA civil servants.

If you count only space related civil servants (not aeronautics or Earth science, etc), SpaceX probably has more employees.

But you can't compare just civil servants.  NASA uses contractors not just to do the actual hands on work with flight hardware.  NASA has contractors in HR, IT, janitorial, facility maintenance, security, fire and rescue, program office support, etc

For example, LSP has around 160 civil servant but with contractor support it is around 550.

Online chopsticks

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #11 on: 05/15/2023 05:23 pm »
Gwynne, not Gwen, but yup.

It should be noted that SpaceX now directly employs almost as many people as NASA. Over 12,000 SpaceX employees and under 18,000 NASA civil servants.

If you count only space related civil servants (not aeronautics or Earth science, etc), SpaceX probably has more employees.

But you can't compare just civil servants.  NASA uses contractors not just to do the actual hands on work with flight hardware.  NASA has contractors in HR, IT, janitorial, facility maintenance, security, fire and rescue, program office support, etc

For example, LSP has around 160 civil servant but with contractor support it is around 550.
Doesn't SpaceX do the same though? If I understand right, there are a lot of subcontractors that SpaceX uses as well, for example the concrete pouring and the pile driving at the launch site currently.

I might be wrong though, down clarification would be nice.

Really cool about Kathy, BTW.

Offline Jim

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #12 on: 05/15/2023 05:46 pm »
Doesn't SpaceX do the same though? If I understand right, there are a lot of subcontractors that SpaceX uses as well, for example the concrete pouring and the pile driving at the launch site currently.

I might be wrong though, down clarification would be nice.

Really cool about Kathy, BTW.

Nobody does construction in house.  I am talking about running a facility and launching rockets.

Online chopsticks

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #13 on: 05/15/2023 06:04 pm »
Doesn't SpaceX do the same though? If I understand right, there are a lot of subcontractors that SpaceX uses as well, for example the concrete pouring and the pile driving at the launch site currently.

I might be wrong though, down clarification would be nice.

Really cool about Kathy, BTW.

Nobody does construction in house.  I am talking about running a facility and launching rockets.
Oh, I see. Thanks.

Online Robotbeat

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #14 on: 05/15/2023 07:55 pm »
Gwynne, not Gwen, but yup.

It should be noted that SpaceX now directly employs almost as many people as NASA. Over 12,000 SpaceX employees and under 18,000 NASA civil servants.

If you count only space related civil servants (not aeronautics or Earth science, etc), SpaceX probably has more employees.

But you can't compare just civil servants.  NASA uses contractors not just to do the actual hands on work with flight hardware.  NASA has contractors in HR, IT, janitorial, facility maintenance, security, fire and rescue, program office support, etc

For example, LSP has around 160 civil servant but with contractor support it is around 550.
Well aware, but good point. SpaceX also has contractors for some of that stuff, but not to the same extent that NASA does.

My point was just that SpaceX is a huge employer now, the biggest US employer in human spaceflight outside of NASA.

Not terribly surprising she would be hired there, just due to raw numbers.
« Last Edit: 05/15/2023 08:01 pm by Robotbeat »
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Online Zed_Noir

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #15 on: 05/15/2023 10:35 pm »
<snip>
Quote
Scoop – @KathyLueders, former top NASA human spaceflight official, joined SpaceX, according to CNBC sources.

Lueders is based at Starbase in Texas and will report directly to president & COO Gwynne Shotwell:

https://www.cnbc.com/2023/05/15/elon-musks-spacex-hires-former-nasa-official-kathy-lueders.html

Heh, I predicted Lueders will joined SpaceX when she retired from NASA.

Wonder how long before Kathy Lueders join Bill Gerstenmaier at SpaceX?

Thinking about it. It seems Lueders probably have a deal with SpaceX before the retirement announcement. Since the news of her joining SpaceX is only 15 days after her retirement from NASA.  ;)
« Last Edit: 05/16/2023 12:35 am by Zed_Noir »

Offline Hamish.Student

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #16 on: 05/16/2023 02:12 am »
Quote
Kathy Lueders, the most recent top human spaceflight official at NASA, has joined Elon Musk’s SpaceX after retiring from the agency a couple of weeks ago, CNBC has learned.

Lueders’ role will be general manager, and she will work out of the company’s “Starbase” facility in Texas, reporting directly to SpaceX president and COO Gwynne Shotwell, people familiar with the matter told CNBC.

It’s a key hire for SpaceX as the company aims to make its massive Starship rocket safe to fly people in the coming years. Lueders, a respected expert in the sector, is already familiar with the company’s human spaceflight work to date.

https://www.cnbc.com/2023/05/15/elon-musks-spacex-hires-former-nasa-official-kathy-lueders.html

Online Robotbeat

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #17 on: 05/16/2023 04:23 am »
Being discussed here: https://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=58523.msg2469962#msg2469962

[zubenelgenubi: Three threads merged.]
« Last Edit: 05/17/2023 02:46 am by zubenelgenubi »
Chris  Whoever loves correction loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

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Offline Hamish.Student

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #18 on: 05/16/2023 04:30 am »
Being discussed here: https://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=58523.msg2469962#msg2469962
 
 
A strange location, I certainly couldn't find it. Surely as it is related to Starbase and Starship as a whole, it belongs in this section?

Offline DigitalMan

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Re: Kathy Lueders hired as General Manager at Starbase
« Reply #19 on: 05/16/2023 04:50 am »
Since Kathy's responsibilities managing Starbase are now different than the scope of Artemis HLS only, I would agree with it belonging here.

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