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Stennis Space Center gets new director


NASA officials have announced the appointment of Dr. Richard J. Gilbrech as director of the John C. Stennis Space Center (SSC) in Bay St. Louis.

Gilbrech replaces outgoing director Patrick Scheuermann, who has taken a job as director of the Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. Gilbrech previously served at SSC director from 2006-2007 and returned to the facility in 2009 as deputy director.

Scheuermann was named SSC director in 2010 after working as a senior executive at the Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans. He recounted some of his work during Hurricane Katrina to the Mississippi Business Journal in an August 2010 interview.

“I pinch myself everytime I put on my NASA badge,” Scheuermann said. “No matter the title, it is a great honor.”

Scheuermann’s directorship oversaw the retirement of the Space Shuttle and the last testing of its main engines at SSC. He recently presided over the opening the Infinity Science Center, the Hancock County facility’s premier tourist attraction showcasing its rocket engine testing work from the space race of the 1960’s to current privatized rocket missions.

Gilbrech started his NASA career in 1991 in propulsion testing technology and in 2003 was named a  managing executive of all the agency’s rocket propulsion test facilities.

A Mississippi State University graduate, Gilbrech earned two aeronautical degrees from California Institute of Technology and also worked for the Langley Research Center and NASA headquarters in Washington D.C.

For his service, Gilbrech has received numerous awards including the Presidential Rank Award and the NASA Outstanding Leadership medal.


>>Infinity lifts off at Stennis Space Center on the Gulf Coast

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>>Stennis successfully test fires rocket engine

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