Celeste Ford, Board Chair and Founder of Stellar Solutions, Inc., a Malcolm Baldrige National Award-winning global aerospace and systems engineering services leader solving the most complex issues facing commercial and government clients today. A visionary in talent cultivation and retention, Ford has led Stellar Solutions to its 25th Anniversary year with a mission to deliver high-impact projects and satisfy customer needs by ensuring that the company’s highly trained experts are in their dream jobs.
Stellar Solutions provides key services in the multi-billion dollar marketplace for the development, delivery, and expansion of space exploration, communications and intricate technology connections across multiple frontiers. Of major significance are Ford’s efforts to develop and sustain a culture in which diverse perspectives and skills create a competitive advantage.
As an example, Stellar Solutions’ “Crossing Boundaries” program was an early model of intersectional problem solving that continues to empower each of its 200 employees to draw upon the expertise of peers across the organization and the industries they serve.
In addition to the Malcolm Baldrige Award, the nation’s highest honor for performance excellence and sustainability, and its affiliate California Award for Performance Excellence (CAPE), Stellar Solutions has been recognized for its growth and culture as a Fortune Great Place to Work (2014 – Present), a Top 50 Women-Owned Businesses by the Silicon Valley / San Jose Business Journal, and one of the Fastest Growing Companies of the Bay Area by the San Francisco Business Times.
Ford’s recognitions include Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year, the Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame, Fortune Small Business Magazine’s Best Bosses, and the Women in Aerospace Leadership Award.
Her early career included serving as a guidance and control engineer for COMSAT (Communications Satellite Corporation), and project manager with the Aerospace Corporation where her work on NASA’s Space Shuttle Program led to recognition as “Woman of the Year.”
She is a Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) and has been a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She serves on the Board of Simpson Manufacturing and is a Trustee of the University of Notre Dame where she attained her B.S. in Aerospace Engineering. She holds an M.S. in Aerospace Engineering from Stanford University.
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