D-Fend Solutions announced today that former NASA Administrator Major General Charles F. Bolden Jr. (USMC-Ret.) will be joining the company’s advisory board. Bolden is expected to positively impact D-Fend’s market leadership in the counter-small, unmanned aerial systems (C-sUAS) for sensitive environments category.
A graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, Bolden flew over 100 combat missions during the Vietnam War. He later served as a test pilot for the Naval Air Test Center’s Systems Engineering and Strike Aircraft Test Directorates.
His 34-year career with the Marine Corps included 14 years as a member of NASA’s Astronaut Office. After joining the office in 1980, Bolden traveled to orbit four times, commanding two of the missions and piloting the others, for a combined 680 hours in space.
Following his service as an astronaut in 1994, he served as the Assistant Commandant of Midshipmen at the Naval Academy, and in 1998 as the Commanding General of the Marine expeditionary force attached to Operation Desert Thunder in Kuwait. He last served as Commanding General of the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, California, prior to his retirement from the Marine Corps.
In 2009, President Barack Obama appointed Bolden to be the 12th NASA Administrator, making him only the second astronaut to hold that position. During his distinguished career with NASA, Administrator Bolden’s leadership ventures included an unprecedented landing on Mars with the Curiosity rover, the launch of a spacecraft to Jupiter, enhancing the nation’s fleet of Earth-observing satellites and continued progress toward the scheduled December 2021 launch of the James Webb Space Telescope, the successor to the Hubble Space Telescope.
Bolden also served as Chief of NASA’s Safety Division at the Johnson Space Center in the wake of the 1986 space shuttle Challenger disaster.
“Safety was always a top priority during my career and the special focus on safety in the counter-drone approach by D-Fend Solutions is imperative due to the proliferation of drones, frequency of rogue drone incidents, and the risks of collateral damage and operational disruption posed by legacy C-UAS technologies,” said Bolden. “I am honored to join this impressive C-sUAS advisory team and share the knowledge and best practices I have accumulated during my career to help D-Fend continue to grow.”
“D-Fend Solutions is excited to have a leader of Major General Charles F. Bolden Jr.’s caliber join our advisory board,” said Zohar Halachmi, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of D-Fend Solutions. “His unique skillset around safety, deep aviation and military knowledge, and industry relationships are expected to be major assets for D-Fend.”
Bolden holds a Master of Science degree in systems management from the University of Southern California. His past honors include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, the Defense Superior Service Medal, the Distinguished Flying Cross, Air Medal, three NASA Exceptional Service Medals and four NASA Space Flight Medals. He received the Rotary National Space Trophy in 2014 and holds Honorary Doctorate degrees from numerous institutions of higher education. He was inducted into the U.S Astronaut Hall of Fame in 2006 and the National Aviation Hall of Fame in 2016. Bolden served as a U.S. Department of State Science Envoy for Space from 2018-2019. He serves today as CEO emeritus of the Charles F. Bolden Group, a veteran-owned small business specializing in aerospace, national security, leadership and education.