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Portrait of James Demers with U.S. and NASA flags in background.

James “JD” Demers

Chief, Aircraft Operations

James “JD” Demers serves as the chief of Aircraft Operations at NASA’s Glenn Research Center in Cleveland. Selected for this position in May 2017, he is qualified on all of the center’s aircraft and has over 4,000 hours in high performance aircraft. Demers began working for NASA in 2001 and has previously served in the roles of research pilot and aviation safety officer. 

Demers completed his bachelor’s degree in physics with distinction from Virginia Military Institute and was commissioned as an ensign into the U.S. Navy upon graduation. In 2003, he earned his master’s degree in applied physics from Johns Hopkins University. 

Demers served in the U.S. Navy from 1991-2002, first as a research physicist where he conducted warhead initiation tests and then as a naval aviator assigned to the S-3B Viking. As a naval aviator, Demers was deployed on the USS Constellation in support of Operation Southern Watch. Prior to NASA, he conducted flight tests and evaluations of new weapon systems, avionics and mission systems at Naval Air Station Patuxent River. He finished his military career with more than 300 carrier arrestments aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln, USS Saratoga, USS Kitty Hawk, USS John C. Stennis, USS Carl Vinson, and the USS Constellation.