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Alumni Spotlight: David King

Director of the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center

David Arnold King is an American engineer who was the tenth Director of the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center located in Huntsville, Alabama. He was appointed to the position on June 15, 2003.

King, a native of Sumter, attended USC Sumter for two years (1979-81), and earned his bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from USC Columbia in 1983.
He announced his retirement from NASA on March 26, 2009. Soon thereafter, King started in the position of Executive Vice President at Dynetics, Inc., a Huntsville-based defense contractor. He was promoted to President in 2013 and then to CEO in 2015.

King joined NASA in 1983 as a main propulsion system engineer. In subsequent roles, he also served as vehicle manager and flow director (1992–1996) for the Space Shuttle Discovery, overseeing preflight preparation, test and checkout of the orbiter. He was appointed acting deputy director of the Installation Operations Directorate in 1995; deputy director of Shuttle Processing in 1996; Shuttle launch director in 1997; and director of Shuttle Processing in 1999.

King served as deputy director of the Marshall Space Flight Center from November 2002 until his appointment as director, and served as the senior on-site NASA official during recovery operations for the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster.
King received his master's degree in business administration from the Florida Institute of Technology in 1991.