Ms. Janet Karika supports NASA’s Launch Services Program (LSP) as the Jacobs Executive Director of Interagency Launch Programs. She is the executive-level point of contact within NASA LSP for coordinating and facilitating program-wide partnerships and interchanges with the Air Force, National Reconnaissance Office, and other government agencies for NASA’s expendable launch vehicle programs. Ms. Karika works closely with established and emerging commercial space launch companies. Within the U.S. Government Interagency, she interacts with both the non-proliferation and space communities.
During her more than 30 years in the space and missile field, Ms. Karika served as the Executive Advisor to the Air Force for space acquisition programs and as the Assistant for Launch Systems for the Office of the Secretary of Defense. Prior to retiring from the AF, she was the Air Force Program Executive Office Director for both heritage launch programs and the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) program. She advised the Director of the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency (ACDA) on space and missile non-proliferation, and was ACDA’s representative to the multi-nation Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR). She worked on the development of ICBMs, upper stages for launch vehicles, commanded a 72-person nuclear detection operations center, and was a Materials Research Scientist at NASA Ames Research Center. She has been a member of U.S. delegations to Berlin, Moscow, Paris, Tokyo, and Zurich.
She holds a B.S. and M.S. in Mechanical Engineering; with an emphasis in ultra-high temperature composites used in space propulsion and thermal protection systems. She is an Associate Fellow of AIAA, a member of the FAA’s Commercial Space Transportation Advisory Committee (COMSTAC), and is a member of the Board of Directors for Women in Aerospace (WIA).