Kris Acosta, a member of the Defense Intelligence Senior Executive Service, is the Director of Intelligence and System of Systems Engineering of the Space Systems Integration Office, Space Systems Command (SSC), Los Angeles Air Force Base, California. She establishes and maintains enterprise level technical baselines, engineering processes, specialty engineering, and the overall systems engineering strategy for space acquisition programs. Ms. Acosta is responsible for enterprise analysis including red and blue modeling and simulation in support of threat-informed architecture development and requirements definition. In addition, her organization is leading the digital transformation / digital engineering effort for SSC. Ms. Acosta is responsible for the SSC Intelligence Division ensuring that the enterprise space architecture is resilient to emergent and enduring threats. She supports the integration of National Security Space weapons systems, intelligence programs, civil space systems, commercial capabilities, and international cooperative partnership systems to create a collaborative and resilient all-of-government enterprise space architecture.

With over 27 years of experience in the aerospace and defense industry, Ms. Acosta is a multi-disciplinary engineer who has served in a variety of roles in the areas of reusable launch vehicles, autonomous air systems, military aircraft, directed energy, and national space systems. Across various business areas, Ms. Acosta focused on streamlining programmatic and systems engineering processes to deliver new capabilities rapidly and efficiently. Most recently, Ms. Acosta was the General Manager for Vector Launch, LLC focused on developing liquid fueled target vehicles. At Northrop Grumman Corporation (NGC), Ms. Acosta worked in roles ranging from Manager of Systems Engineering, Global Supply Chain Program Manager, and Program Manager on a variety of new business opportunities. Prior to joining NGC, she worked at Boeing for over eight years as a thermal protection systems engineer developing advanced insulation systems for the Space Shuttle Orbiter, X-37 and other reusable launch systems.

2012 Master of Advanced Studies, Architecture-based Enterprise Systems Engineering, University of California at San Diego, La Jolla, CA
1992 Bachelor of Science, Materials Science and Engineering, University of California at Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA

March 1995 – August 1999, Member of Technical Staff III, Boeing
March 1999 – August 2001, Materials & Processes Engineering Manager, Boeing
August 2001 – August 2003, Project Management Specialist 5, Phantom Works, Boeing
August 2003 – July 2012 – Systems Engineer IV, Integrated Systems, NGC
July 2012 – August 2015, Systems Engineering Manager, Aerospace Systems, NGC
August 2015 – January 2019, Global Supply Chain Program Manager Aerospace Systems, NGC
February 2019 – April 2021, Program Manager, Space Systems Engineering & Integration, Space Systems, NGC
May 2021 – November 2021, Director of Programs & Operations, Vector Launch, LLC.
November 2021 – August 2022, General Manager, Vector Launch, LLC.
August 2022 – November 2022, Supervisory General Engineer, Space Systems Command, Space Force, Los Angeles Air Force Base, CA
November 2022 – Present, Director of System of Systems Engineering, Space Systems Command, Space Force, Los Angeles Air Force Base

Society of Women Engineers (SWE) Los Angeles Professional Development Conference Chair, 2014-2017
President, Women in Defense Greater Los Angeles Chapter (WIDGLAC) 2018, Vice President 2017, Director of Sponsorship 2015-2016
NGC Vice President Mentoring Program Participant, 2015
NCG NGWIN Director of Outreach, 2016-2017
NGC Experienced Manager Mentor, 2017
SWE Prism Award, 2018
SWE Curriculum Chair, 2020, Chair-Elect 2019, Committee Member 2016-2018
Developed in Partnership with SWE and NCG, the SWENext Community Awards Program for High School Students, 2016 - 2021
NCG Women’s International Network (NGWIN) Director of SWENext, 2017-2021
Society of Women Engineers (SWE) Senator, 2021-2023
Southern California Aerospace Professional (SCAPR) Member, 2021
International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) Member, 2022

Co-author and presenter, “Ceramic Composites for Thermal Protection Systems”, 5th Japan International SAMPE Symposium, 1997
Author and presenter, “Shuttle TPS Upgrades: The Boeing Approach”, NASA Shuttle Upgrades Conference, 1998
Author, “Thermal Protection Systems for Reusable Launch Vehicles”, Air Force Research Laboratory’s 3rd Thermal Protection Materials Workshop, 2000
Co-author and presenter, “The Evolution of Flexible Insulation as Thermal Protection Systems for Reusable Launch Vehicles: AFRSI to CRI”, National Space and Missile Materials Symposium, 2001
Co-author and presenter, “Rain Durability Assessment of TPS”, NASA Ames Research Center Thermal Protection Materials Workshop. 2001
Author and presenter, “Thermal Protection Systems for Reusable Launch Vehicles”, 1st Annual Symposium on Future Reusable Launch Vehicles, 2002
Co-author and presenter, “Thermal Protection Systems for Reusable Launch Vehicles”, National Space and Missile Materials Symposium, 2002

Monazite-Based Blanket Coatings for TPS, Patent No. 6,716,407, Granted Apr 6, 2004 (under name Kris S. Oka).
Hybrid Aerogel Rigid Ceramic Fiber Insulation and Method of Producing Same, Patent No. 6,770,584, Granted Aug 3, 2004 (under name Kris S. Oka).

(Current as of November 2022)