Virgin Galactic

Director, Airworthiness

Company Virgin Galactic
Category Quality Assurance
Req No.
Regular Full-Time
Location : Location

Who we are

Virgin Galactic (SPCE:NYSE) Virgin Galactic recognizes that the answers to many of the challenges we face in sustaining life on our beautiful but fragile planet, lie in making better use of space.

Sending people to space has not only expanded our understanding of science, but taught us amazing things about human ingenuity, physiology and psychology.

From space, we are able to look with a new perspective both outward and back. From space, the borders that are fought over on Earth are arbitrary lines. From space it is clear that there is much more that unites than divides us.


“We are at the vanguard of a new industry determined to pioneer twenty-first century spacecraft, which will open space to everybody — and change the world for good.”  Sir Richard Branson, Founder, Virgin Galactic


If you are looking for a challenging opportunity that will ignite your passion for designing cool and innovative products, are exceptionally creative, are a great problem solver, and can make things happen - apply today!

Your Mission

Principal Duties and Responsibilities:

  • Develop certification/conformity plans for Virgin Galactic Vehicles
  • Lead, develop and grow the Virgin Galactic Airworthiness team
  • Plan, guide, and lead compliance efforts across multiple programs and multiple sites.
  • The Director needs to be the path finder to guide VG through the development of airworthiness criteria using regulatory, corporate and customer requirements.
  • Provide technical leadership in selecting certification criteria and requirements throughout VG, as well as coordinating the development of a gated process.
  • Responsible for maintaining currency and accuracy of VG’s FAA-AST issued RLV operator license.
  • Responsible for developing and executing activities to ensure airworthiness of Virgin Galactic flight vehicles; carrier aircraft and spaceships, including obtaining FAA experimental airworthiness certification and currency of both vehicle types as well as vehicle registration for VG flying assets.
  • Responsible for coordinating and executing Letters of Agreement (LOA) with FAA Air Traffic Control and the Department of Defense for the use of the National Air Space and restricted military air space to allow operations of Virgin Galactic’s space flight vehicles for flight testing and commercial operations.
  • Responsible for establishing a FAA 14 CFR part 145 Repair Station to support Virgin Galactic operations in New Mexico.
  • Responsible for establishing a FAA 14 CFR part 25 compliance plan and communicating changing requirements throughout VG.
  • Support  VG’s participation in the development of industry standards and help develop a company position with subject matter experts.
  • Lead VG Technical Publications team, product development and work priorities with guidance from Engineering, Safety and other leader stakeholders.

Program Management Skills:

  • The ability to identify, orchestrate, coordinate and control the management activities and processes that integrate program interdependencies throughout their life cycle to achieve successful program completion.
  • The ability to initiate, develop, integrate, execute, direct and control program plans and cost and schedule baselines that meet both program contractual requirements and stakeholder expectations.
  • The ability to plan for, identify, estimate, cost, acquire, schedule, and retire resources needed to satisfy program requirements within organizational constraints.
  • The ability to effectively plan, define, establish, communicate, monitor, and control scope to ensure that all of the work required and only the work required is performed.
  • The ability to define, document, analyze, trace, prioritize, and confirm requirements throughout the entire program life cycle.
  • Proven experience with Military and/or Civil Airworthiness Certification.
  • Familiarity with Real-Time Component Framework for flight critical software development.
  • Desired: Avionics background and familiarity with Vehicle Management Systems and related Subsystems.

Other Job Responsibilities Might Include:

  • Conduct airworthiness assessments to support and guide design development, modification, and equipment failure investigations.
  • Assist in development and delivery of airworthiness capabilities.
  • Generate reports surrounding projects and assessments.
  • Undertake regular audits in accordance with quality control regulations.
  • Liaise with the FAA in the rollout, execution, maintenance, and recording of VG’s SMS and QMS, and provide continued support in monitoring the effectiveness of the management systems to ensure alignment with regulatory needs and standards for safe operations.

What you bring

Basic Qualifications:

  • Education: BS or BA Degree in Engineering.
  • Experience: Minimum of 15 years’ experience in Aviation Management-related fields with a demonstrated track record of managing highly trained technical personnel is required.
  • A thorough understanding of complex modern avionics systems and FAA certification and Quality system requirements/procedures is required.
  • A thorough understanding of Technical Standards and Publications, understanding of aerospace type certificate or experimental aircraft certification process.
  • Minimum 15 years of experience with technical, cost, and schedule responsibility for complex, flight/safety critical systems.
  • Extensive experience interacting with the FAA
  • Subject matter expertise in FAA Part 21, 25, 400, 450


Preferred Qualifications:

  • Product design
  • Aircraft safety knowledge
  • Stakeholder management
  • Project management skills
  • Design certification experience within an aerospace organization
  • Previous OEM aircraft operations experience
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Team player
  • Strong problem solving and decision-making skills


ITAR Requirements

To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, applicant must be a U.S. citizen, lawful permanent resident of the U.S., protected individual as defined by ITAR (22 CFR §120.15) or eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State.


As part of our commitment to health and safety, COVID-19 vaccines are required for current U.S. teammates, as well as all newly hired employees. 

As of October 1, 2021, all new hires must be able to provide proof that they are fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus, ( “fully vaccinated” means at least two weeks have expired since receiving the vaccination’s last dose as recommended by the manufacturer) . If  you are offered employment, this requirement must be met by your date of hire. 


Virgin Galactic is an Equal Opportunity Employer; employment with Virgin Galactic is governed on the basis of merit, competence and qualifications and will not be influenced in any manner by race, color, religion, gender, national origin/ethnicity, veteran status, disability status, age, sexual orientation, marital status, mental or physical disability or any other legally protected status.


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