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Colonel Marty France

Permanent Professor & Department Head

Department of Astronautics

Colonel Marty France
Contact Information

(719) 333-8580

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Bio

Colonel France is Permanent Professor and Head of the Department of Astronautics, United States Air Force Academy. He commands the Department of Astronautics with final responsibility for curriculum, personnel, research, budget, long-range planning, faculty development, and cadet instruction. The Department of Astronautics helps produce the finest Air Force officers in the world who live our core values and understand space. He supervises 30 Air Force officers, NCOs, civilians and support contractors offering 18 college-level courses annually to educate over 1,300 cadets in Astronautics and Space Operations. He also manages a dynamic $6.0M+ research program funded by Air Force Space Command, AFRL, and other DoD organizations.

Colonel France earned his commission from the U.S. Air Force Academy in 1981, graduating with majors in Engineering Mechanics and Engineering Sciences. Colonel France’s professional experience includes research and development assignments with the Air Force Research Lab working on high energy laser systems, as the Air Force Exchange Engineer to France, assigned to Toulouse, France, and as a program manager at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). He served as the Chief Scientist of the Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization (JIEDDO) during a sabbatical assignment and has earlier experience as an instructor, associate professor, and executive officer in the Department of Astronautics, USAF Academy. Colonel France also served as a staff officer at Air Force Space Command, the Air Staff, and on the Joint Chiefs of Staff, writing long range mission area plans for space forces, in a variety of requirements positions for space support, force enhancement, space superiority, intelligence, and special access programs, and in key support roles within the Pentagon during Operations NOBLE EAGLE and ENDURING FREEDOM. He was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship in 2014 and served as a visiting scholar to Nanyang Technological University (Singapore) during the fall of that year. He has published technical, policy, and strategy papers in several refereed journals, is a fully qualified Foreign Area Officer (fluent in French), a Joint Specialty Officer, and a Level III Certified Acquisition Professional.

Education

Master of Science, National Security Strategy (distinguished graduate), National Defense University, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, DC (2000)

Air Command and Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Alabama (1995)

Doctor of Philosophy, Engineering Science and Mechanics, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Virginia (1989)

Master of Science, Aeronautics and Astronautics, Stanford University (1984)

Squadron Officer School, Maxwell AFB, AL (correspondence) (1984)

Bachelor of Science, Engineering Science and Engineering Mechanics, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado (1981)

Professional Experience

Fulbright Scholar, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (2014)

Chief Scientist and Science Advisor to the Director, Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization (JIEDDO), Washington, DC (2008-2009)

Deputy Director of Requirements and Chief, Space Superiority Division, Directorate of Requirements, HQ Air Force Space Command, Peterson AFB, Colorado (2004-2005)

Program Manager, DARPA, Arlington, Virginia (2002-2004)

Joint Concepts & Architecture Analyst, Joint Warfighting Capabilities & Analysis Directorate (J-8), Joint Chiefs of Staff, Washington, DC (2002)

Chief, C4ISR and Space Branch, Requirements and Acquisition Division (J-8), Joint Chiefs of Staff, Washington, DC (2000-2002)

Student, The National War College, National Defense University, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, DC (1999-2000)

Chief, Space Programs and Requirements Branch, HQ USAF/XORR, Washington, DC (1998-1999)

Chief, Spacelift Requirements Branch, Directorate of Requirements, HQ Air Force Space Command, Peterson AFB, Colorado (1997-1998)

Command Lead for Space Support Mission Area Plans, Directorate of Plans, HQ Air Force Space Command, Peterson AFB, Colorado (1995-1997)

Student, Air Command & Staff College, Maxwell AFB, Alabama (1994-1995)

Exchange Engineer, Office Nationale d’Etudes et de Recherches Aérospatiale, Toulouse, France (1992-1994)

Student, Defense Language Institute, Presidio of Monterey, California (1991-1992)

Associate Professor & Executive Officer, Department of Astronautics, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado (1989-1991)

PhD Student, Virginia Tech, Virginia (1986-1989)

Instructor, Dept of Astronautics, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado (1984-1986)

Student, Stanford University, California (1983-1984)

Laser Systems Structural Engineer, Air Force Weapons Laboratory, Kirtland AFB, New Mexico (1981-1983)

Honors & Awards

Legion of Merit with one oak leaf cluster

Defense Meritorious Service Medal with one oak leaf cluster

Meritorious Service Medal with five oak leaf clusters

Joint Service Commendation Medal

Air Force Commendation Medal with one oak leaf cluster

Air Force Achievement Medal

Joint Meritorious Unit Award

Global War on Terrorism Support Medal

National Defense Service Medal

Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal

Colorado Springs Mayor’s “Spirit of the Springs” Award for Public Service (2012)

Department of Health & Human Services Secretary’s Distinguished Service Award (2002)

National Defense University President’s Award for Writing and Research (2000)

Air Force Association’s National War College Writing Award (2000)

USSPACECOM Annual Essay Contest Winner (1995)

U.S. Air Force Academy Engineering Division Company Grade Officer of the Year (1990)