Dr. Ravi Chaudhary is the Director of Advanced Programs and Innovation, Office of Commercial Space Transportation (AST), at the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Reporting directly to the Associate Administrator for Commercial Space, he is responsible for the execution of advanced development and research programs in support of the FAA’s Commercial Space Transportation mission. The Directorate of Advanced programs includes the office of the Chief Engineer, providing technical leadership and performance-based oversight of AST’s regulatory responsibilities for the Commercial Space Industry. He also leads all AST Research and Development activities, including the FAA’s nationally recognized Center of Excellence in Commercial Space (COE CST), a consortium of ten different universities committed to cutting-edge research in the space field.
Dr. Chaudhary previously served as Executive Director, Regions and Center Operations, at the FAA. In this role he was responsible for leadership, integration, and execution of aviation operations in 9 different regions located nationwide. He executed a $254 Million operating budget, and led over 400 Federal Employees geographically located across the nation. As second in command to the Deputy Assistant Administrator, he was responsible for providing Department of Transportation and FAA-wide services in the areas of operations, safety, policy, industry and congressional outreach, and emergency readiness for the National Aerospace System.
Ravi Chaudhary is a former Air Force officer, having completed 21 years of service. He has completed a variety of command, operational, engineering, and senior staff assignments in the Air Force. As a C-17 pilot, he conducted and led global flight operations in Europe, Asia, Africa, the Caribbean, and the Pacific regions. As a flight test engineer, he was responsible for FAA Technical Standard Order (TSO) certification of military avionics and hardware for over $2 Billion in Air Force Transport Modernization Programs supporting flight safety and mishap prevention. Dr. Chaudhary also supported space launch operations for the Global Positioning System (GPS), and led third stage and flight safety activities to ensure full-operational capability of the first GPS constellation. As a systems engineer, he supported NASA’s International Space Station test activities, to include development of the first orbital debris repair systems to ensure safety of NASA Astronauts. Dr. Chaudhary also serves as a member of the President’s Advisory Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. In this role, he advises the President on executive branch efforts to improve economic and community development, public and private sector collaboration, health, education and veterans support for the AAPI community.
Dr. Chaudhary holds a Doctorate specializing in Executive Leadership and Innovation from the Georgetown University D.L.S. Program, an M.S. in Industrial Engineering from St. Mary’s University as a NASA graduate fellow, an M.A. in Operational Arts and Military Science from Air University, and a B.S. in Aeronautical Engineering from the Air Force Academy. He has published numerous articles in Future Strategy, Aircraft Design, Business Transformation, and Space Operations. Dr. Chaudhary holds FAA commercial, multi-engine, and instrument pilot certificates and has logged over 3000 hours as a pilot and flight test engineer (760 combat hours) and multiple deployments since Sept 11, 2001.