NASA Names Exploration Project Directors

Press Release From: NASA HQ
Posted: Thursday, April 8, 2004

image NASA selected Garry M. Lyles as Deputy Director of Project Constellation and Charles J. Precourt as Program Director of the Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV).

"I am very excited about the addition of these two excellent managers to the Office of Exploration Systems' team," said Craig Steidle, Associate Administrator for the Office of Exploration Systems. "Their experience and skills will be critical as we begin developing plans for extending human presence to the moon by 2015," he added.

As the Deputy Director of Project Constellation, Lyles is responsible for the development of all exploration transportation and support systems needed to achieve the Vision for Space Exploration. That includes returning to the moon and then on to Mars.

Lyles was the manager of NASA's Next Generation Launch Technology program at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC), Huntsville, Ala. He was responsible for leading efforts to develop technologies for safe access to space.

Lyles previously managed the Advanced Space Transportation Program at MSFC. He was responsible for developing NASA's space transportation and propulsion "roadmaps" for the next 25 years. Since coming to NASA in 1976, Lyles had several propulsion related positions at MSFC, including chief engineer for the Space Shuttle Main Engine; chief of the Canoga Park Resident Office for the Space Shuttle Main Engine Project Office; and division chief of the Propulsion Systems Division of the MSFC Propulsion Laboratory.

He earned his bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa, Ala.

Precourt is responsible for developing the CEV. It is NASA's first human exploratory spacecraft since Apollo. The CEV will carry astronauts to the moon as early as 2015.

Before his appointment to headquarters, Precourt was the Deputy Manager of the International Space Station Program at NASA's Johnson Space Center, Houston. He was responsible for the day-to-day management of Space Station operations, on orbit assembly, interfaces with NASA contractors and international partners.

Precourt became an astronaut in 1991. He is a veteran of four space flights, logging more than 932 hours in space. He was Director of Operations for NASA at the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center, Star City, Russia. As Chief of the Astronaut Corps, he was responsible for mission preparation for Space Shuttle and International Space Station crews and their support personnel.

Precourt received a bachelor's of science degree in aeronautical engineering from the U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo. He received his master's of science degree in engineering management from Golden Gate University, San Francisco, and a master's of arts degree in national security affairs and strategic studies from the U.S. Naval War College, Newport, R.I.

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