20:00 PM

Anthony Thornton appointed as the USRA Director of Corporate Strategy

The Universities Space Research Association is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Anthony Thornton as the organization's Director of Corporate Strategy. Thornton will be joining USRA on July 16, 2015 based in USRA's Houston office, which is home to the Lunar and Planetary Institute and USRA's Division of Space Life Sciences.

Over the past five years, USRA has expanded its programmatic activities with great success, nearly doubling in size in annual revenue. Thornton will work to ensure USRA remains focused on forward planning and execution of well-conceived corporate strategies which will further its contributions to science, nonprofit purpose, and commitment to growth through sustainability and diversification.

"Anthony is an executive strategist with over twenty years' experience leading applied R&D activities with demonstrated success maturing advanced technologies for the aerospace, defense and intelligence communities, including extensive experience in strategic planning, policy formulation, and resource allocation," said Vince DeFrancisci, USRA Vice President for Corporate Strategy and Development. "I am very excited Anthony will join our organization and very much look forward to working with him."

Prior to joining USRA, Thornton was at Sandia National Laboratories and served in several capacities since 2005 with his most recent role as the Deputy to the Vice President for Programs & Technology, Defense Systems & Assessments. Before joining Sandia National Laboratories, Thornton served Lockheed Martin Aeronautics for eight years in various positions which culminated in two years as the Deputy Director for the Joint Strike Fighter New Initiatives.

Over the course of his successful career, Thornton has achieved several honors and awards including the 2015 Distinguished Engineering Alumni Award from the College of Engineering at Purdue University and was presented the National 2001 Black Engineer of the Year Award for Professional Achievement by U.S. Black Engineer and Technology Magazine.

Thornton holds a doctorate in Aeronautics and Astronautics from Purdue University, a master's degree in Engineering (AE/ME Interdisciplinary) from Stanford University, and a bachelor's degree in Aerospace Engineering Sciences from the University of Colorado Boulder.