NASA JPL Memo: Bobby Braun Departing JPL

Status Report From: Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Posted: Thursday, January 20, 2022

To: JPL Employees and Contractor Personnel

From: Interim Director Larry James

Subject: Bobby Braun

Bobby Braun, Director for Planetary Science and Bren Professor of Aerospace at Caltech, has accepted the position of Space Exploration Sector Head of the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory, and will be leaving JPL at the end of March 2022. Even as I am sad that the Lab is losing a great leader, I would like to congratulate Bobby on his new role and expect that we will be crossing paths in a number of ways in the future.

Bobby joined JPL in October of 2019, but he had collaborated with the Lab beginning in the early 1990s, primarily on Mars projects. During his tenure as Director for Planetary Science, the Laboratory experienced multiple successes in this area to include:

- the competitive selection of VERITAS and VenSAR

- a new start for Mars Sample Return with creation of a new NASA program office at JPL

- the first integrated cost, schedule and technical baseline for Europa Clipper (with launch on a CLV expected in 2024)

- finalization of the plan to launch Lunar Trailblazer in 2023 (two years earlier than previously planned), and

- the successful Perseverance launch, landing and initial surface operations, and the incredible success of Ingenuity.

Additionally, Bobby has been a superb leader in our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion efforts, serving on the Inclusion Advisory Committee and as the champion on our Executive Council for the Black Excellence Strategic Team.

Bobby has made a major impact on the Lab that will guide us into the future and I want to thank him deeply for all that he has done. I ask you to join me in wishing him all the best in his new endeavor.

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