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Fri, Aug 19, 2011

Wilcutt Appointed To Head Safety For NASA

Succeeds Bryan O'Connor As Chief Of Office of Safety And Mission Assurance

NASA reports Terrence W. Wilcutt has been appointed the agency's chief of safety and mission assurance, effective September 1. Wilcutt is a retired Marine colonel and veteran astronaut who is serving as director of safety and mission assurance at NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston. He will assume the post from Bryan O'Connor, who will retire from the agency on August 31.

NASA Administrator Charles Bolden commented, "As NASA looks beyond the space shuttle to new programs of human exploration, technology development and scientific research, we remain committed to the highest standards for mission success and the well-being of our work force. Terry Wilcutt has more than 20 years of experience in human spaceflight and safety, as well as the integrity and courage necessary to lead what arguably is NASA's most important support organization, the Office of Safety and Mission Assurance, and serve as my conscience on issues of safety as did Bryan O'Connor during our time together. I am delighted Terry stepped forward to guide us safely into the future."

In his new role, Wilcutt will be responsible for the development, implementation and oversight of safety and mission assurance policies and procedures for all NASA programs.

"I look forward to continuing Bryan's work and to meeting the challenges of the next chapter in human space exploration as well as the rest of NASA's diverse portfolio," Wilcutt said.

Wilcutt joined NASA as an astronaut in 1990. He was the pilot on two space shuttle missions, STS-68 in 1994 and STS-79 in 1996. He commanded two others, STS-89 in 1998 and STS-106 in 2000. He served as manager of safety and mission assurance for the Space Shuttle Program, and as Johnson's deputy director of safety and mission assurance before becoming director in 2008.

FMI: www.nasa.gov

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