LORD Corp. recently announced that Maj. Gen. Charles Frank Bolden, Jr., U.S. Marine Corps (ret.), has joined its board of directors. Bolden most recently served as the 12th administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) from July 17, 2009, until January 20. Earlier in his career, Bolden served 34 years in the U.S. Marine Corps, retiring in 2003 with the rank of major general.
At NASA, Bolden led a nationwide team to advance the mission and goals of the U.S. space program. During his tenure, Bolden oversaw a safe transition from 30 years of space shuttle missions to a new era of exploration focused on full usage of the International Space Station and space aeronautics technology development. NASA’s dynamic science activities under Bolden reportedly include an unprecedented landing on Mars with the Curiosity rover, launch of a spacecraft to Jupiter, enhancing the nation’s fleet of Earth-observing satellites, and continued progress toward the 2018 launch of the James Webb Space Telescope, the successor to the Hubble Space Telescope.
In the Marine Corps, Bolden completed flight training and served as a naval aviator, flying more than 100 combat missions in North and South Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia. Later, Bolden was reportedly selected as a member of NASA’s Astronaut Office and traveled to space orbit four times aboard the space shuttle, commanding two of the missions and piloting two others. His flights included deployment of the Hubble Space Telescope and the first joint U.S.-Russian shuttle mission.
After 14 years as an astronaut, Bolden served in multiple command assignments for the Marine Corps. In 1997, Bolden was assigned as the deputy commanding general of the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force in the Pacific. During the first half of 1998, he served as commanding general of the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force Forward in support of Operation Desert Thunder in Kuwait. He was promoted to his final rank of major general in July 1998 and named Deputy Commander of U.S. forces in Japan.
Bolden retired from the Marine Corps in 2003. His many military decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal and the Distinguished Flying Cross. He was inducted into the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame in May 2006.
“We are honored to welcome former NASA Administrator and retired Major General Charlie Bolden to LORD,” said Ed Auslander, president and CEO. “Throughout his highly accomplished career, Charlie has served as an outstanding role model for integrity, courage and a pioneering spirit. We are humbled that Charlie will bring these same qualities to our board of directors and help us navigate the complexities we face in our global markets.”
For more information, visit www.lord.com.