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Thomas Crabb

Senior Vice President & General Manager
Space Applications

Thomas (Tom) Crabb is Senior Vice President and General Manager of Sierra Space’s Space Application Sector, leading all aspects of the company’s Space Application business.

Tom brings more than thirty-five years of experience in space systems, including innovative products in life support systems, advanced space missions and propulsion systems. Crabb was previously the CEO of the Orbital Technologies Corporation (ORBITEC), where he grew the company’s patent developments, commercial products, and spaceflight hardware programs. Under his leadership, the company received NASA’s two largest SBIR commercialization programs awarded to date. In 2014 SNC acquired ORBITEC as a subsidiary and in 2017 ORBITEC became fully integrated under Sierra Nevada Corporation’s Space Systems division.

Tom is currently leading the development of the VORTEX engines, which have immediate value for in-space, upper stage and full stage solutions. He also oversees the development of state-of-the-art advanced life support systems for next generation human and cargo transportation including future habitats for long duration human spaceflight. Additionally, Tom and his team worked with NASA to co-develop VEGGIE, a system that uses cutting-edge science solutions to grow food and plants in space through a specialized self-contained system currently being used on the International Space Station. This technology is a key part of the future of space exploration.

Tom serves on numerous boards including the Small Business Technology Coalition, the Wisconsin Space Business Roundtable, the American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) and the Commercial Spaceflight Federation. Previous positions include Chairman of the AIAA Space Systems Technical Committee (STTC) and Secretary of the AIAA Space Operations Technical Committee. Tom has also taught space system design coursework at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee and was a 2002 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist.

Tom received his Masters of Business Administration from the University of Wisconsin and has a Masters of Science in Astronautical Engineering from University of Wisconsin and Ohio State University. He also has a Bachelor’s of Science in Engineering Mechanics from the University of Wisconsin.