Dr. Bryan Benedict serves as Senior Director of Innovation & Spacecraft Programs at SES Government Solutions. During his career he has worked extensively within both the DoD and US Civil Agencies to socialize the advantages of hosting imaging payloads on commercial spacecraft. Additionally, Dr. Benedict has been a key advocate in the commercial industry for the use of space robotics for both recovery and life extension of geosynchronous satellites.
Prior to his current position Dr. Benedict served as the Product Line Manager for Commercial and Civil Hosted Payloads at Intelsat General Corporation, Director of Hosted Payloads at Intelsat, Director of Engineering for Satellite Bus & Launch Service Acquisitions at PanAmSat and was a System Engineering Manager at Hughes for the BSS601HP product line.
Dr. Benedict started his career as a chemical engineer in the petroleum industry – inventing and patenting several catalysts still used for stabilization of jet fuels. Dr. Benedict earned his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin in 1986, where he conducted research on the stabilization of high energy materials within crystalline lattices.
Dr. Benedict has been awarded a number of patents throughout his career – the latest for delivery of microsatellites to orbit piggybacking on the nadir deck of geosynchronous communication satellites.Dennis Gatens
Dennis co-founded LEOcloud to bring to market the first public cloud services in space. LEOcloud Space Edge hybrid cloud services will enable the lowest latency for AI and analytics that will drive competitive and operational advantage for commercial, government and military organizations.
Prior to forming LEOcloud, Mr. Gatens was the Chief Commercial Officer for Cloud Constellation Corporation where he had global responsibilities for sales, marketing, channel management, and strategic alliances.
With 35 years of experience in terrestrial and space-based managed services, he has a track record of bringing emerging technologies to market for managed services working with global partners and service providers to introduce next generation solutions into their cloud service offerings.
Mr. Gatens earned his BS in electrical engineering from Virginia Tech and his MBA from Radford University.Dennis Silin
Dennis Silin is a Canadian entrepreneur, founder of Exodus Orbitals, one of the first companies that provides service for deployment of software payloads into space, using experience acquired from participating in European Space Agency OPS-SAT mission. He had a long and successful career as software developer in multiple companies, but his true passion was always space exploration. Before starting to work full-time as CEO of Exodus Orbitals in 2019, his other contributions in this area included participating in multiple NASA Space App hackathons and presenting his paper on interstellar travel at 2011 NASA/DARPA Hundred Year Starship conference. His education included BSc in Computer Science from Ryerson University and MSc in Astronautics and Space Engineering from Cranfield University.Craig Vachon
After grad school, Craig couldn’t find a job, so he started a small company. He got extremely lucky and sold that company to a Japanese firm two years later. After a few more very lucky professional experiences (and having lived as an expat for 12 years), Craig decided to spend his efforts helping fellow entrepreneurs solve important human challenges as an angel investor. He joined AIR because he thinks they’re tackling one of the more impactful issues that humanity now faces—how humans will continue to benefit from/steer/trust AI.Ryan Westerdahl
Ryan Westerdahl is CEO and one of the Co-Founders of Y-Combinator backed startup Turion Space. At Turion Space Ryan leads the team of engineers who are building spacecraft to deorbit space debris and service existing satellites. Prior to founding Turion Space Ryan comes from an 8.5 year run at SpaceX where he worked as a propulsion dynamicist working on various aspects of propulsion development, vehicle analysis, anomaly resolution, and military and crew certification.