Craig, Mark K. | Purdue University Libraries, Archives and Special Collections
Mark K. Craig is a technical expert in spacecraft design and analysis. He graduated from Purdue University with a B.S. in Aeronautical and Astronautical Engineering in 1971. He also pursued engineering post-graduate study at Rice University (1974-1983) and completed the MIT Sloan School Program for Senior Executives (1992). He has a lengthy tenure at NASA, where he began his career in 1967 as a co-op student on the Apollo program, and was the youngest member of Max Faget’s 1969 Space Shuttle concept development “skunk works.”
His career progressed as he worked as an aerospace engineer and manager in various positions at NASA in Houston, where he worked on the Apollo-Soyuz, Space Shuttle, Space Station, Mars Rover Sample Return and Moon-Mars Exploration programs in positions ranging from engineer to program manager. At NASA Headquarters in Washington he was Director of Space Exploration and architect of the NASA Strategic Plan. He has been Deputy Director of NASA’s Stennis Space Center and Associate Director of NASA’s Johnson Space Center.
Craig has also worked as an advisor on space exploration to museums and related organizations. After a 38 year career with NASA, he became the NASA Account Manager at Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC). He has authored over 35 papers on technical and strategic aspects of space exploration. He has received the NASA Distinguished Service Medal, the NASA Outstanding Leadership Medal, and the Federal Engineer of the Year Award. He is a Fellow of the American Astronautical Society and is a Distinguished Engineering Alumnus of Purdue University. Mr. Craig was elected to the International Academy of Astronautics in 1992 and is a past President of the American Astronautical Society.