Kirk Shireman is presently serving as the deputy director of NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. In his position, Shireman will work with Johnson Center Director Ellen Ochoa to manage one of NASA’s largest installations, with nearly 14,000 civil service and contractor employees – including those at White Sands Test Facility in Las Cruces, N.M. – and an annual budget of approximately $5.1 billion. Shireman will help oversee a broad range of human spaceflight activities.
Prior to being named deputy center director, Shireman served as deputy program manager, since 2006, of the International Space Station Program. In this position, Shireman was responsible for implementing program policies, planning and directing the program’s development and operations, managing the integration of all elements of the program into one functional system, and ensuring effective cost control of the program.
Shireman also served as the chair of the International Space Station Mission Management Team, where he was responsible for all aspects of on-orbit operations of the International Space Station. He was responsible for the overall management and integration of all program operations elements, including the United States and international partners. Primary focus was the operations elements supporting the performance of the real-time and near real-time missions.
Born in Corpus Christi, Texas, Shireman joined NASA in 1985. He began his career in Navigation, Control & Aeronautics Division as Principle Function Manager, responsible for ascent digital autopilot filter designs.
In 1989, Shireman became manager of Solid Rocket Booster and External Tank Separation for the space shuttle program, responsible for ensuring that the solid rockets and external tank successfully separated from the Space Shuttle in all flight conditions. He later also became the manager of Ascent Guidance, Navigation and Control for the space shuttle, responsible for vehicle sustaining the Shuttle ascent GN&C system.
In 1994, Shireman began supporting the International Space Station Program, first serving manager of Navigation and Control Subsystems for the station. Between 1997 and 2000, Shireman served as manager over the space station’s Russian Elements and Operations Integration branch, during the development and launch of the Russian service module and the launch of the first permanent crew.
Shireman has been recognized with NASA’s Exceptional Achievement Medal for successful integration of the International Space Station’s Russian elements. He also received the Silver Snoopy award in 1990 and the Presidential Rank Award in 2010. In 2013, Shireman received the Eagle Manned Mission Award for his outstanding leadership of the International Space Station from the National Space Club at its 56th Annual Robert H. Goddard Memorial Dinner in Washington D.C.
Shireman holds a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from Texas A&M University. He and his wife Kris reside in Pearland, Texas. They have one daughter, Erin.