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Christyl Johnson Named New Goddard Deputy Center Director for Science and Technology
GREENBELT, Md. – NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Director Rob Strain has named Christyl Johnson to be the new Deputy Center Director for Science and Technology. Johnson’s previous position was the agency’s Assistant Associate Administrator in the Office of the Administrator at NASA Headquarters. In this role, she assisted the Associate Administrator in the oversight of NASA’s technical mission areas and field center operations.

In her new post at Goddard, Johnson will manage the research and development portfolio, and will be responsible for formulating the Center’s future science and technology goals and leading an integrated program of investments aligned to meet those goals.

“The Deputy Center Director for Science and Technology is an enormously important job at Goddard,” says Strain. “Christyl will be our chief strategist for charting the cutting-edge technologies we want to invest in to maintain our technical leadership, the new projects we want to pursue, and the partnerships we want to form with government, academia and the private sector. Christyl brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the post, both on the technical and policy sides, and we are extremely pleased she will be joining us.”

Johnson will begin this new role at Goddard on December 6, following a 2-year detail to the White House, Office of Science and Technology Policy, as Executive Director of the National Science and Technology Council. In this role, she worked with Administration officials to coordinate science and technology policy across the federal government, and to establish clear national goals for Federal science and technology investments in a broad array of areas across the executive branch, including basic science, technology, energy, environment, natural resources, and homeland and national security.

Prior to being named NASA’s Assistant Associate Administrator in the Office of the Administrator, Johnson served as the Deputy Chief Engineer for Program Integration and Operations in the Office of the Chief Engineer. She provided an integrated focus for the development, maintenance, and implementation of agency engineering and program/project management policies, standards and practices.

Before that, Johnson worked in the Office of Earth Science as the Associate Director for Exploratory Missions, where she managed the formulation and development for all Exploratory Missions, and was involved in mission development activities with Goddard, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Langley Research Center and several international and industry partners.

Johnson began her NASA career as a summer intern in 1985 at the Langley Research Center in Hampton, Va., in the Remote Sensing Technology Branch, assisting in designing and building laser systems for advanced active remote sensors. She has held a number of senior engineering, project management, and organizational management positions at Langley involving the design, development, and application of state-of-the-art and advanced systems and subsystems for atmospheric, aeronautic and space flight research missions.

Johnson has received numerous awards, including the NASA Office of Earth Science “Terra Award – Enterprise MVP,” the National Technical Association’s “Outstanding Woman in Science” award and the National Celestial Torch Award for “Distinguished Engineer in Aerospace.”

Johnson earned her bachelor’s degree in physics from Lincoln University in Pennsylvania, and a master’s degree in electrical engineering from Pennsylvania State University. She is currently finishing a Ph.D. program in Systems Engineering at the George Washington University in Washington, D.C.

Born in North Carolina, she now resides in Woodbridge, Virginia. Johnson and her husband Darryl have a 12 year old son named Jerrin. When she is not working or studying, she enjoys spending time outdoors and traveling with her family.

For Christyl Johnson's biography, click here:
Goddard Release No. 10-108

Mark Hess
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.