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Portrait of Robert Fails National Aeronautics and Space Administration
John H. Glenn Research Center
Lewis Field
Cleveland, Ohio 44135

Robert E. Fails

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Robert E. Fails is the Associate Director at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Glenn Research Center. He assumed this position in November 2003. As Associate Director, Fails participates in the overall management of the Center, developing Center strategic plans, evaluating future and existing programs, establishing both personnel and monetary resource allocations, and reviews Center management practices. He reports directly to the Center Director and Deputy Director. He is also serving in the capacity of Acting Chief Financial Officer, as well as, Acting Director of Center Operations.

Prior to becoming the Associate Director, Fails served as the Center's Chief Financial Officer. He was responsible for all the financial and resource management activities for the $773 million operation. He held that position from September 1995 to November 2003.

Fails began his NASA career at Glenn in 1978 as a program analyst where he had a significant role in de-centralizing the Center's budget management process. Over the last 26 years he has served in a number of managerial positions including his selection as Chief of the Center's central budget office in 1989 and as Deputy Comptroller in 1994.

Before joining NASA, Fails was an auditor with the Defense Contract Audit Agency in Cleveland, Ohio. While there he was exposed to a variety of contractor accounting systems and management processes, as well as the federal acquisition process.

He has received several awards including NASA's Exceptional Service Medal in 1994 for his innovative approach to managing the Center's budget formulation process and the Presidential Rank Award of Meritorious Executive in 2000.

Fails received his bachelor of business administration degree in accounting from Kent State University and is a Certified Public Accountant.

Fails and his wife, Janet, reside in Rocky River, Ohio. They have three children.



  1. Fails retired from NASA on August 3, 2006.