Text Size
Historical Biography - Andrew J. Stofan
November 12, 2014

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

Andrew J. Stofan


Andrew J. Stofan is the Director of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Lewis Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio. He was appointed to this position on June 22, 1982.

Mr. Stefan began his professional career at the Lewis Research Center in 1958 as a research engineer. His first assignment was to conduct analytical and experimental research on turbojet ejector nozzles. In 1960, Mr. Stefan began research on propellant motion in space vehicle propel l ant tanks. His expertise in this field was recognized in 1962 when he was assigned to the original Centaur Project Office as a member of the Propellant Systems Section. (Centaur is a high-energy upper stage vehicle which uses liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen as propellants.) He was instrumental in solving a dynamic instability problem on the Centaur vehicle and was the systems engineer for thedevelopment of the Centaur propellant utilization system .

In 1966, Mr. Stofan was named Head of the Propellant Systems Section. As section head, he played a major role in solving a low-gravity propellant management problem for the Centaur vehicle. The solution arrived at was used on the Saturn manned missions.

Mr. Stofan, in 1967, was designated Project Manager of a test program that successfully demonstrated the use of a pressurization system for the Centaur vehicle by full-scale hot-firing of the Centaur stage in a vacuum facility at the NASA Plumbrook Test Facility.

He was named Assistant Project Manager, Improved Centaur, in 1969 to continue development of the Improved Centaur, to integrate the Titan and Centaur vehicles, and to develop a new vehicle/payload fairing system. A year later, he become Project Manager of the new Titan/Centaur vehicle.

As Manager, Titan/Centaur Project Office (1970-1974), Mr. Stofan was responsible for all activities associated with the design and development of the launch vehicle. He directed the launch of the Titan/Centaur Proof Flight (T/C-1) in February 1974.

Mr. Stofan assumed the role of Director, Launch Vehicles, in 1974, and from then until 1978 he directed the launch of ten Atlas/Centaurs (Intel sat, COMSTAR, and HEAO spacecraft) and six Titan/Centaurs (Viking, Helios, and Voyager spacecraft). The success of the Titan/Centaur, a major new launch vehicle, was due to the combined efforts of a NASA/Air Force/Aerospace team coordinated by Mr. Stofan.

On January 15, 1978, Mr. Stofan was appointed Deputy Associate Administrator for the NASA Headquarters Office of Space Science in Washington, D.C. In this position, he served as the general manager of the Office of Space Science and was responsible for the evaluation and direction of all space science programs. He was appointed Acting Associate Administrator for Space Science on October 14, 1980.

On December 3, 1981, the Office of Space Science combined with the Office of Space and Terrestrial Applications to become the Office of Space Science and Applications. Mr. Stofan continued as acting Associate Administrator for the new organization and was responsible for the planning, direction, execution, and evaluation of that part of the overall NASA program concerned with the study of the Universe. This included the exploration of the planets, the study of the Sun and the Sun-Earth environment , the study of living systems in space, the study of the Earth as a planet, and the utilization of the vantage point of space to aid in solving major national problems and to contribute to economic development.

Mr. Stofan attended Hiram College in Ohio, receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1958. His major was mathematics, in that same year, he received a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. Mr. Stefan obtained additional graduate hours in math and engineering at Case-Western Reserve University in Cleveland.

Mr. Stofan has received Group achievement Awards for the Titan/Centaur Project Team and the Helios Team in 1975, and for the Shuttle Flight Certification Team in 1981. He received the NASDA Exceptional Service Medal in 1975 and the NASA Distinguished Service Medal in 1981. In 1982, Mr. Stefan was awarded the Presidential Rank of Meritorious Executive. In 1985, Mr. Stefan received the Presidential Rank Award To Distinguished Executives.

He is a member of the policy committee of the Cleveland Federal Executive Board, is on the Board of Trustees of the Cleveland National Air Show and the Greater Cleveland Growth Association, is a member of the Cleveland Area Development Corporation Steering Committee, a Board Member of the Cleveland Council of the Boy Scouts of America, and is a board member on the State of Ohio Technology Information Exchange and Innovation Network (TIE-IN). He also serves on the Board of Governors of the Aviation Hall of Fame.

Mr. Stofan is an avid skier and enjoys jogging.  He and his wife, Barbara, live in Westlake. They have two daughters, Lynn and Ellen.


  1. Andrew J. Stofan was Center Director from 1982 to 1986.
Image Token: 
Andrew J. Stofan
Andrew J. Stofan
Image Token: 
Image Token: 
Page Last Updated: November 12th, 2014
Page Editor: Kelly Heidman