Our Team

NanoRacks is managed by a team of space industry veterans who understand the marketplace and have their own positive reputations in the community.

Jeffrey Manber – CEO

Jeffrey has served as the CEO of NanoRacks from 2009 onwards, and more recently, has taken on the role of chairman of the XO Markets board.

Jeffrey, along with co-founder Mike Johnson, has steered the growth of NanoRacks from a garage space in Webster, Texas to a storage facility as the first company shop to where NanoRacks is today – a pioneer and now leader in the commercial market for low-Earth orbit utilization. For the future,

Jeffrey is increasingly focused on bringing NanoRacks hardware and commercial services to more and more in-space platforms. Read more about Jeffey Manber.

Chris Cummins – Chief Commerce Officer, NanoRacks LLC

Chris is an experienced financial innovator with an aerospace background, and has been involved in the financing side of commercial space since 1981.

Prior to being a pioneer in developing fund-linked products at Citigroup, Chris consulted to various aerospace companies and worked at NASA/JSC developing cost and schedule estimates for the ISS.

Chris holds a MS in Statistics from NYU, a MBA from Yale, and a BA in physics and government from Cornell. Read more about Chris Cummins.

Richard Gruver – Chief Financial Officer

As CFO of NanoRacks, Richard works across the full range of NanoRacks’ new products, new subsidiaries, and create the financial tools needed to manage NanoRacks while undergoing rapid growth.

Richard has expertise as a CPA with experience working in companies as large as Dell and across a number of space ventures.

Richard Pournelle – Senior Vice President of Business Development, NanoRacks LLC

Rich manages sales and business development for NanoRacks. He has been involved in commercial space for over fifteen years. Prior to NanoRacks, he worked for investment bank Near Earth helping aerospace companies raise capital.

Richard spent eight years working at Mojave Spaceport for XCOR Aerospace as Director of Business Development. He began his career as Professional Staff for the Committee on House Administration where he helped create the THOMAS legislative information system. Richard holds a BA in Political Science from UCLA. Read more about Richard Pournelle.

Mike Johnson – Chief Designer, NanoRacks LLC

Mike has over 20 years of experience in the aerospace industry and has extensive spacecraft design, fabrication and operations experience obtained through his association with the SPACEHAB Module program since 1991.

Located in Houston, Texas, Mr. Johnson has extensive experience in working NASA programs on Mir, shuttle, Soyuz, HTV as well as commercial vehicles. In addition, Mr. Johnson holds 9 issued US Patents and has one other pending.

Mr. Johnson received his B.A. in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Minnesota Institute of Technology in 1989.. Read more about Mike Johnson.

Mike Lewis – Chief Technology Officer, NanoRacks LLC

As the CTO of NanoRacks, LLC, Mike oversees the technical, scientific, and engineering direction for the go-to company for commercial space needs.

Previously, as a consultant to NanoRacks he supported the areas of design, analysis, business development, and project management in order to help the company provide repeatable access to the ISS and other microgravity environment platforms for commercial and educational research projects.

Before joining NanoRacks, Mike was the lead engineer for Deep Down, Inc., a Houston-based company that fabricates subsea structures and services deepwater subsea oil operations. Prior to that, Mike comes from a background of Aerospace (Tethers Unlimited, Inc.), Electromechanical Design (ANCO Engineers, Inc.), Structural Engineering (Structural Components, LLC) and as an Adjunct Professor in Space Systems Operation Management (Webster University).

Marcia Blount – Director of Houston Operations, NanoRacks LLC

Marcia first joined NanoRacks as the Logistics Program Manager and has been overseeing all Houston operations since early 2015. She is in charge of Program Planning, Logistics Management, Planning Execution and Coordination. Before joining NanoRacks, she spent 6 years on the Lockheed Martin Cargo Mission Contracts (1&2) as a Project Engineer. During this time she was an External Carriers Project Manager, Maintenance & Operations Planning lead, Flight Cargo Mission Lead and Crew Provisions Lead.

Prior to Lockheed Martin, she spend several years at Spacehab, Inc. performing project coordination and Russian programs. Marcia is a veteran of the U.S. Army and served as an Aviation Operation Specialist, primarily in Air Ambulance battalions between South Korea and central Texas. Marcia is a Summa Cum Laude Graduate of LeTourneau University, where she earned her BBA.

Keith N. Tran – Mission Operations Manager, NanoRacks LLC

Keith has over two decades of experience in human space flight operations at both NASA and JAXA (Japan Aerospace eXploration Agency). Prior to NanoRacks, he worked as the International Space Station Flight Controller for over 10 years at NASA. After that, Keith supported and trained the JAXA flight control team for the next 10 years in the area of human space flight operations.

Mr. Tran received his BSEE degree in the University of Houston in 1994. Contact Keith at ktran@nanoracks.com

J. Brockton (Brock) Howe – Project Manager, NanoRacks LLC

Brock is a product driven Engineer/Manager with over 25 years of experience in aerospace and oil field engineering product development including requirement development, conceptual design, detailed design and analysis, fabrication, testing, certification, operation, and product improvement.

Prior to NanoRacks, Brock worked in a variety of engineering and project management roles at a number of companies including General Dynamics, Space Industries, Johnson Engineering, ABB Lummus Global, SpaceHab Inc, Qualified Technical Services Inc, DynCorp International, and Houston Offshore Engineering – all based in Texas.

Kirk Woellert – External Payloads Manager, NanoRacks LLC

Kirk has a diverse background from the U.S. Intelligence Community, National Security Space and Information Technology. Kirk holds an M.A. in International Science and Technology Policy (Space Policy) from The George Washington University and a B.S. in Mathematics from Lander University.

Mary Murphy – Senior Internal Payloads Manager, NanoRacks LLC

Mary has worked at NanoRacks LLC since July 2014, as the Senior Internal Payloads Manager, she oversees Account Managers, managing customer expectations and making sure there is efficient use of NanoRacks and NASA resources.

She provides overall project coordination between stakeholders for all customer accounts and coordinates with business development and financial staff to ensure contractual requirements flow down to payload integration activities. Mary serves as the primary interface between customers and NASA senior management as required, between customers and NanoRacks Operations, Flight Safety, Engineering and Avionics teams as well.

Previously, Mary worked as a Program Engineer and Project Manager at Advanced Technology Systems Company, Teaching Fellow in Project Engineering and Manufacturing at the University of Maryland, and an Assistant Project Manager and Bid Coordinator at Sun Control Systems. Mary holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Maryland and the Project Management Professional (PMP) Certification from The Project Management Institute.

Abby Dickes – Marketing and Communications Manager

Abby is the Marketing and Communications Manager working out of the NanoRacks’ DC Office. She handles press, public relations, launch guest operations, creative and strategic planning, event planning, and external company communication. In addition, she oversees website updates, graphic design, and both print and digital marketing materials.

Abby’s past experience includes working at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, NASA Headquarters’ Office of Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs, the House Science Committee, and Aerospace Industries Association. She achieved of Bachelors of Art in Government and Politics with a minor in Astronomy from the University of Maryland, College Park.

Ronald Goedendorp – Vice President of Space Opportunities, NanoRacks LLC

With 20 years of experience in business and corporate development experience in imaging systems, aerospace, semiconductor, sensor, medical device, data analytics and risk industries, Ron has secured business and M&A of over $200 million and closed over $20 million in venture capital. He is a former CEO, COO and analyst with clients and customers including GE, AIG, AON, Zurich, Bertelsmann, Norsk-Hydro, General Physics and Texas Instruments.

Ron is a graduate of the University of California, San Diego, and a co-founder of the UCSD Bay Area Alumni Scholarship Fund. He speaks English, Dutch, German, and French. Ron enjoys sailing, cycling and anything turbocharged.

Peter Bak – Head of European Operations, NanoRacks LLC

Peter Bak joined the NanoRacks team in September 2015 as the company’s first Head of European Operations. In this role, he leads efforts to serve NanoRacks’ European customers. Peter joined NanoRacks with more than 25 years of experience from a variety of diverse, high-tech industries, including developing telecommunication solutions with Motorola/Freescale and Smart Grid research with Danish Vestas Wind Systems. Most recently, Peter has spent the last three years working with the Danish CubeSat company, Gomspace, as COO and Head of Customer Deliveries.

Peter has worked with customers and development teams from Asia, Europe, and the USA and understands services customers in a truly global context. He holds a Masters in Electrical Engineering from the University of Aalborg, Denmark.

Chad Brinkley – Business Development Executive, Houston

Mr. Brinkley currently supports NanoRacks as a Business Development Executive. Additionally, Mr. Brinkley serves as an owner and Strategic Advisor to L2 Aerospace, LLC that provides end to end mission assurance capabilities to the government via engineering services and Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance (ISR) Flight System products, and is the Co-Founder of ProXopS, LLC an aerospace engineering services and strategic lifecycle consulting firm.

Previously, he supported a non-profit called the Center for the Advancement of Science in Space (CASIS) as the Business Development Manager focused on International Space Station (ISS) flight projects for conducting research and development.

Troy Guy – Avionics Engineering Manager, NanoRacks LLC

As the Avionics Engineering Manager of NanoRacks LLC, Troy manages the engineering laboratory for the design, development and successful deployment of commercial space platforms. He provides hands-on technical leadership to the avionics and electronics group responsible for delivering fully integrated hardware systems and solutions for NanoRacks customers.

Prior to joining NanoRacks, Troy served as a Staff Integrated Product Team Lead on the Sierra Nevada Corporation Dream Chaser, a commercial lifting-body space vehicle. Prior to that, Troy was lead engineer on the Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory Spacecraft and the ORION spacecraft while at Lockheed Martin Space Systems. Troy began his professional career in the nuclear science community, performing high energy-density experiments in support of physics-based weapon and fundamental research programs at the Los Alamos National Laboratory.

Troy holds degrees in Electrical Engineering, Nuclear Engineering and Physics from the University of Houston and Texas A&M University, respectively.

Martin Wilson – Webmaster, NanoRacks LLC

Martin is a Webmaster and a known digital marketing expert. His team are recognized as one of the leading web designers for space-themed programs and are a major driving force in the growth of a number of organizations.