Banquet Presentation

The banquet dinner and invited presentation will take place Friday October 11, 2019 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the Flint Institute of Arts, 1120 East Kearsley Street, Flint, Michigan 48503-1915.

Added October 10, 2019: Signing up for the banquet dinner is closed. However, A VERY LIMITED number of banquet tickets may be available the day of the meeting on a first come-first served basis. Ask about this on site at the registration desk of the meeting.

Invited Speaker

Craig H. WilliamsCraig.H.Williams 
Senior Aerospace Engineer

Propulsion Division
NASA Glenn Research Center (GRC)
Cleveland, Ohio


This presentation is an overview of NASA’s current plan for sending humans to the planet Mars as well as the 1987-92 Space Exploration Initiative study.  The objectives of the program, mission overview, Earth-Mars transit space propulsion systems (nuclear thermal and nuclear electric), space environment concerns, how people would live on the Martian surface, and initial colonization plans will be covered.  The current status of ongoing robotic mission will also be discussed. The role the NASA Glenn Research Center had during this effort will also be explained.


Craig Williams is an aerospace engineer experienced in civilian and military engineering design and project management of space launch vehicles, advanced space propulsion, space power systems, and related aerospace systems analyses. Mr. Williams holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Cornell University and a Master of Science in Aerospace engineering from University of Michigan. He is licensed Professional Engineer (PE) in Mechanical engineering in the state of Ohio. He is currently a Senior Aerospace Engineer in the Propulsion Division and leads NASA’s support of Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency’s Experimental Spaceplane program to enable operationally efficient, shorter schedule, and lower cost access to low Earth orbit.

Previously, he held a number of positions, including:

  • New Business Development Specialist, where he initiated new, strategic partnerships with Dept. of Defense and other federal entities and he also supported NASA/HQ Science Mission Directorate activities.
  • Senior Project Leader of Systems Analysis at Level II Radioisotope Power Systems Program Office at GRC: Advanced Stirling Radioisotope Generator
  • Project Manager for space propulsion research in high thrust, nuclear fusion concepts at Space Transportation Project Office
  • Lead Aerospace Engineer in Advanced Space Analysis Office; LeRC: Mission Design Panel Chairman for Titan IV- Cassini launch to Saturn. HQ Liaison for advanced ETO/space propulsion concepts. 
  • Project Manager for Assured Shuttle Availability Program’s VAM at Space Shuttle Program Office, and also a technical policy analyst supporting legislative affairs, both at NASA Headquarters.  

Aerospace Engineer: LeRC: Flight Design Working Group Chairman for Atlas/Centaur-69 Earth orbital launch. Led advanced chemical space engine technical assessment and upper stage studies.

  • Captain:  Manager of Systems Engineering at Titan IV Program Office at USAF HQ Space Division,LA AFB 
  • Lieutenant: USAF Det. OLAC: Shuttle/Centaur upper stage development engineer for Galileo to Jupiter and national security payload.