Vaya Space, Inc. the privately-held hybrid rocket company and leader in sustainable space access, today announced that well-known multinational business leader Brent David Willis has joined their company as Chief Executive Officer, replacing CEO Grant Begley, who will continue with the firm as a member of the Board of Directors.
NASA’s first U.S.-born Hispanic Astronaut and Shuttle Commander, and current Vaya Space Chairman, Sid Gutierrez commented, “We are so excited to have Brent join our leadership team. Brent is a mission-oriented and values-centric leader that fits in perfectly with our culture. We are confident that his experience in developing transformative strategies in major multinational companies will translate to Vaya Space becoming the leader in the Space Industry.”
Vaya Space has been at the forefront of developing safer technologies to access space. Their breakthrough and patented 3D printed hybrid engines deliver greater than 25% lower cost and are fueled with recycled plastics, utilizing more than 2 million plastic bottles per launch. Vaya demonstrated their efficacy against the multi-billion-dollar small satellite launch sector with their successful launch earlier this year and is taking orders now for future planned launches.
“Getting back to my Aerospace roots where I started my career is incredibly exciting, and joining a purpose-driven company like Vaya is humbling,” said Brent David Willis. “Vaya has competitive-advantaged technology that will not only disrupt the market with safe and sustainable access to space, but will also help humankind. We have the right technology, the right team, the right motivation, and are at the right time and place in history to lead in this very attractive industry.”
Selected as CEO Innovator of the Year in 2021 by the Golden Bridge Business Awards, one of the preeminent global business programs, Brent has had a career of developing breakthrough strategy and leading industry transformations. In addition to serving in the US Military, he has had a long track record of success as a senior executive in many multibillion-dollar multinational companies including leading the development of the strategy that created the world’s largest beer company, Anheuser-Busch InBev.
Navy Captain, Top Gun pilot, and former CEO of Vaya Space, Grant Begley commented, “It has been one of my life’s great privileges over the past few years to have led Vaya Space, and I am very pleased and confident to be handing over the reins to Brent. I am proud of all we have done at Vaya including receiving our most recent patent for Vaya’s STAR-3DTM printed rocket fuel, and am equally proud of the impact that I know the new discoveries at Vaya Space will have on the world.”