Director, Assured Position, Navigation and Timing (APNT) Cross Functional Team (CFT)
Mr. Nelson is a member of the Senior Executive Service and serves as the Director, Assured Position, Navigation and Timing (APNT) Cross Functional Team (CFT), U.S. Army Futures Command.
As the CFT Director, he is responsible for synchronizing PNT, Navigation warfare, and Army Space capability development efforts across the U.S. Army to narrow capability gaps through experimentation and technical demonstrations to inform, develop and rapidly transition capability requirements to the Army Acquisition system.
His previous assignments include: Director, Programs and Technology, U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command / Army Forces Strategic Command (SMDC / ARSTRAT) where he directed research, development and test programs for space, missile defense, directed energy and hypersonic weapon technologies; Acting Deputy Director of the Technical Center (SMDC ARSTRAT); Director for Space and Strategic Systems (SMDC/ARSTRAT); and as a Senior Executive Service Developmental Assignment, he served Deputy Chief of Staff G-3/4 for Current Operations at US Army Materiel Command
Prior to these assignments, he served 13 years in technical and leadership positions at the Missile Defense Agency (MDA). His positions include MDA’s Deputy Chief Engineer, where he led Agency-level technical integration of the Ballistic Missile Defense System, and as the Chief Engineer for the Targets and Countermeasures Program Office, where he led the engineering workforce in the acquisition of air and ground-launched missile systems and re-entry systems.
He served in several other key test and engineering roles for MDA in Huntsville, Alabama, and Washington D.C. As the Director for Mission Management & Integration, he led mission management, test planning and readiness activities for all MDA flight and ground tests. He also served as the Chief of Flight Test Resources managing the coordination, planning and integration of test range assets, ship and airborne mobile sensors, and range safety systems. He also led Site Activation Task Force personnel supporting the presidential-directed Initial Defense Operation emplacing the nation’s first operational Ground Based Midcourse Defense interceptors at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California.
Mr. Nelson earned a U.S. Air Force commission through ROTC at the University of Texas at Austin, and retired as a Space and Missile Officer after 20 years of combined active duty and reserve service. During his military career, he served as Chief of Strategy at USSTRATCOM’s Joint Space Operations Center and Chief of Weapons and Tactics at 14th Air Force Headquarters. He also served as Launch Director for Air Force and National Reconnaissance Office space launch missions, Program Test Manager at the Air Force Operational Test and Evaluation Center and ICBM Missile Combat Crew Commander. His operational deployments include Operations Northern Watch, Noble Eagle, and Enduring Freedom. He earned the Command Space Operations Badge and Master Missile Operations Badge.
Mr. Nelson is a Defense Acquisition Corps member and Level III certified in Engineering and Test & Evaluation. He is married, and they have five children.