Stephen M. Francois
Launch Services Program
Stephen M. Francois serves as program manager of the Launch Services Program (LSP) at NASA’s John F. Kennedy Space Center (KSC), Fla. With over 30 years of launch experience, he leads NASA's operational organization responsible for unmanned launch services guaranteeing access to space for the delivery of on-time, on-orbit, and on-cost launch assets satisfying governmentwide space transportation requirements. He oversees the work of over 420 highly skilled government and contractor personnel implementing requirements for the launch of Expendable Launch Vehicles (ELVs). Mr. Francois ensures overall mission success through leading, managing and directing the progress of all ongoing launch operations and activities including ELV engineering and analysis, spacecraft integration, launch site support, and campaigns.
Mr. Francois entered the Federal Service in 1971. He first joined NASA's Expendable Launch Directorate's Centaur Division serving as a propulsion and mechanical engineer during NASA's Titan-Centaur Program. Significant launches during this program included the Viking (Mars) missions and the Voyager missions. Based upon the recognition of his achievements, Mr. Francois was named branch chief of the Centaur Propulsion and Mechanical Branch, followed soon thereafter by being tapped to serve as chief of the Launch Operations Division. Subsequently, he was selected as deputy of the Shuttle Payload Operations Directorate in 1990.
Upon his selection to the Senior Executive Service (SES) in September 1996, Mr. Francois was named director of Space Station and Shuttle Payloads. In this position, he was responsible for the provision of launch preparation and support to shuttle payloads, International Space Station (ISS) assembly elements, the processing of ISS resupply elements, and checkout for the science and experiment utilization. In May 2000, he was selected to lead the ELV and Payload Carriers Programs which was the forerunner of today's LSP. The LSP's most recent successful launches include Pluto New Horizons, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and CALIPSO/CloudSat. LSP is recognized throughout the world for its commitment to excellence and unparalleled mission success rate.
Mr. Francois was born and raised in Centralia, Ill. Following his graduation from Centralia Township High School in 1966, he attended Parks College, a branch of St. Louis University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in aerospace engineering in 1971.
Mr. Francois is married with three daughters and lives in Titusville, Fla.
Biographies - Current Employees