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NASA names new Head of Technology, Policy, Strategy


NASA names new Head of Technology, Policy, Strategy
Charity Weeden, center, is sworn in as associate administrator for NASA’s Office of Technology, Policy, and Strategy by NASA Administrator Bill Nelson, Sunday, Aug. 27, 2023, at the Mary W. Jackson NASA Headquarters building in Washington. Credits: NASA/Joel Kowsky

NASA Administrator Bill Nelson announced Charity Weeden will serve as associate administrator for the agency’s Office of Technology, Policy, and Strategy (OTPS), effective immediately. Weeden succeeds Bhavya Lal, who left the agency in July, and Ellen Gertsen, who had been serving as the office’s acting leader since then.


The Office of Technology, Policy, and Strategy, located at NASA Headquarters in Washington, provides agency leadership with high-quality, evidence-driven advice that guides strategic planning and investments. The office works across NASA’s mission directorates, as well as with the broader space community. Its researchers focus on key areas aligned with agency-level activities and develop options aimed at informing and shaping policy.

NASA names new Head of Technology, Policy, Strategy
Charity Weeden poses for a portrait after being sworn in as associate administrator for NASA’s Office of Technology, Policy, and Strategy by NASA Administrator Bill Nelson, Sunday, Aug. 27, 2023, at the Mary W. Jackson NASA Headquarters building in Washington. Credits: NASA/Joel Kowsky

“When we established the Office of Technology, Policy, and Strategy, the goal was to address a need for strategic advice that cuts across our mission directorates, centers, and other organizations to guide NASA’s success. I am confident Charity and the OTPS team will help us continue that crucial work,” said Nelson. “I want to thank former OTPS Associate Administrator Bhava Lal and Ellen Gersten, who stepped in after Bhavya’s departure, for their leadership and guidance.”


Prior to joining NASA, Weeden served as vice president for global space policy and government relations at Astroscale US, leading its spaceflight safety and long-term space sustainability efforts. Before Astroscale, she was senior director of policy at the Satellite Industry Association. She is a 23-year veteran of the Royal Canadian Air Force, with more than 2,000 flight crew hours on the CP-140 long-range patrol aircraft and assignments that included deputy sensor manager for the US Space Surveillance Network at US Air Force Space Command, policy officer at North American Aerospace Defense Command and US Northern Command, and a secondment to CSA (Canadian Space Agency) as flight support readiness manager, supporting the installation of Canadian robotics aboard the International Space Station.


Weeden earned her undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering from the Royal Military College of Canada and a master’s degree in Space Science from the University of North Dakota. She is also an alumnus of the International Space University Summer Session Program, where her team project focused on in-space servicing.


For more information visit: https://www.nasa.gov/offices/otps/home

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