Kennedy Biographies

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Maynette E. Smith
Chief, Operations Processing Division
Safety and Mission Assurance


Maynette E. Smith is chief of the Operations Processing Division in the Safety and Mission Assurance Directorate at NASA's John F. Kennedy Space Center in Florida. In this capacity, Smith is responsible for the planning and execution of safety and mission assurance activities at Kennedy for the International Space Station Program, Shuttle Transition and Retirement Project and Orion Production Operations.

Smith received her Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering from Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tenn., in 1983, and a Master of Science in computer engineering from the University of Central Florida, Orlando, Fla., in 1995.

Smith began her career with NASA at Kennedy in 1983 as a systems engineer working experiment integration for Spacelab and partial payload experiments. In 1988, she was promoted to experiment project engineer, responsible for integrating multiple engineering disciplines for experiment processing.

Smith entered management in 1991. From 1991 to 1996, she was chief of the Partial Payload Checkout System Branch. In 1996, she began working Space Station Utilization which involved space station experiment processing, serving as the chief of the Payload Integration Division, responsible for launch site planning of station experiments and processing of the last of the Spacelab and partial payloads missions.

As part of Kennedy's reorganization in 2000, Smith became chief of the Utilization Division in the International Space Station Payloads Processing Directorate. Under her tenure, the first seven payload racks and a number of smaller payloads were successfully processed and launched to the station. From 2003 to January 2006, she worked on the center director's staff as the Kennedy Strategic Planning Manager. In January 2006, she returned to the International Space Station Payloads Processing Directorate as the deputy for Program Management. Smith transferred to her current position in April 2008.

Smith has been awarded the Kennedy Center Director's Award, the NASA Exceptional Achievement Medal and numerous performance awards.

September 2011

Biographies - Current Employees