HUNTSVILLE, Ala. -- Teresa Vanhooser, a native of Johnson City, Tenn., has been appointed deputy director of NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala.
In her new position, Vanhooser will work with Marshall Center Director Patrick Scheuermann to manage one of NASA's largest field installations, with nearly 6,000 on- and near-site civil service and contractor employees -- including those at NASA's Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans -- and an annual budget of approximately $2.5 billion. Vanhooser will help oversee a broad range of propulsion, scientific and space transportation activities contributing to the nation's space program.
"There is no better candidate than Teresa Vanhooser to help me lead the Marshall Center into NASA's next era of exploration and discovery," Scheuermann said. "Over the course of her career, she has led, managed and supported projects and programs that span the breadth of Marshall's mission: space systems, propulsion systems, flight hardware, science and engineering.
"Teresa remains a tireless champion of the agency's goals and the nation's interests," he added. "I'm extremely proud to call on her to serve Marshall and NASA in this critical post."
Vanhooser previously was manager of the Marshall Center's Flight Programs & Partnerships Office from 2011 to 2012, leading implementation of the center's human exploration projects and tasks; flight mission programs and projects; and external partnerships.
She was appointed in 2000 to the Senior Executive Service, the personnel system that covers most of the top managerial, supervisory and policy positions in the executive branch of the federal government.
From 2007 to 2011, Vanhooser served as deputy manager, acting manager and manager of Ares Projects -- the launch vehicle development effort at Marshall which laid the foundation for development of NASA's Space Launch System, the heavy-lift launch vehicle set to carry human explorers to new destinations beyond Earth orbit.
From 2004 to 2007, she was co-deputy director of the Engineering Directorate at Marshall, overseeing design, testing, evaluation and operation of hardware and software associated with space transportation, spacecraft systems and science instruments and payloads at the center.
Vanhooser was deputy director of the Flight Projects Directorate in 2004. She was responsible for project management, design, development, integration, testing and operations of ground and flight systems for the International Space Station, and oversaw operations of the Chandra X-ray Observatory -- the world's most powerful X-ray telescope.
From 2000 to 2004, she was manager of the Payload Operations and Integration Department, overseeing all space station science research experiment operations, payload training and safety programs for the station crew and ground support personnel.
As manager of the Space Station Utilization Office from 1997 to 2000, she oversaw development and integration of the space station ExPRESS racks, formally named the "Expedite the Processing of Experiments to the Space Station." From 1994 to 1997, she was manager of the Microgravity Science Laboratory-1 mission, in which 29 experiments were performed in a Spacelab module on the space shuttle. She was assistant mission manager from 1987 to 1994 of the first ATLAS mission, and later managed ATLAS-2 -- the shuttle-borne, remote-sensing laboratory that studied our atmosphere and the sun-Earth connection.
Vanhooser began her NASA career at Marshall in 1980 as an engineer in the Ground Systems Analysis Branch, where she led development and documentation of requirements for integration and testing of payloads for the Spacelab carrier, used to conduct science experiments in the shuttle's payload bay.
She earned a bachelor's degree in industrial engineering from Tennessee Technological University in Cookeville in 1980, and a master's degree in administrative science, with an emphasis on project management, from the University of Alabama in Huntsville in 1986.
Vanhooser has received numerous NASA awards, including a NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal in 2011 for her leadership during the transition of the Ares launch vehicle development effort; a Presidential Rank Award for Meritorious Executives -- the highest honor for career federal employees -- in 2006; and a NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal in 1994 for her management of ATLAS-2. In 1992, she was presented a Silver Snoopy award by the Astronaut Corps for her contributions to the success of human spaceflight missions -- specifically for her support of ATLAS-1. In 2007, she was presented the Engineer of Distinction Award -- the highest award offered to alumni from the College of Engineering at Tennessee Technological University.
She and her husband Mike reside in Madison, Ala. They have two adult children, Heather and Holly, who reside in Nashville, Tenn., and Auburn, Ala., respectively.