Mr. Darrell K. Phillipson, a member of the Senior Executive Service, is Director, Materials and Manufacturing Directorate, Air Force Research Laboratory, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. In this capacity, he leads the Department of the Air Force’s science and technology programs in functional materials, structural materials, manufacturing technology and systems support for advanced, next-generation space, missile and aircraft applications. The Materials and Manufacturing Directorate consists of a workforce of more than 900 military members, civilians and contractors executing an annual budget in excess of $400 million.
Mr. Phillipson began his Air Force career in 1989 as an enlisted Airman in Strategic Air Command and was commissioned as an officer after graduating from the United States Air Force Academy. Upon commissioning, he was awarded a scholarship to attend graduate school at Arizona State University where he became a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering. He has held diverse technical and leadership positions encompassing a diverse range of perspectives (enlisted, officer, civil servant, contractor, and business owner). Throughout his career, Mr. Phillipson has excelled in organizational leadership, personnel development, program management, engineering management, supervision, and systems engineering. Mr. Phillipson has held numerous Air Force roles including serving as Air Force Science and Technology Authorizing Official, Air Force S&T Principal to the Department of Defense High Performance Computing Modernization Program, and AFRL Chief Information Officer.
Mr. Phillipson entered federal civilian service in 2007 as Deputy Chief of the AFRL Plans and Programs Space Sector and was Vice Director of AFRL’s 711th Human Performance Wing prior to being selected for his current position. He was appointed to the Senior Executive Service in 2022.
1995 Bachelor of Science, Mechanical Engineering, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo.
1996 Master of Science, Mechanical Engineering, Arizona State University, Tempe, Ariz.
1999 Squadron Officer School, Maxwell Air Force Base, Ala.
2008 Air War College, Maxwell AFB, Ala.
1. 1989–1990, Missile and Space Electronic Maintenance Specialist (E-3; 2MO31A), F.E. Warren Air Force Base, Wyo.
2. 1990–1991, Cadet, U.S. Air Force Academy Preparatory School, Colorado Springs, Colo.
3. 1991–1995, Cadet, U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, Colo.
4. 1995–1996, Student, Arizona State University, Phoenix, Ariz.
5. 1996–2001, Chief, Advanced Optics and Imaging Division; Lead Engineer, Advanced Imaging System Program Office; Satellite Systems Engineer, Air Force Research Laboratory/Directed Energy (RD), Kirtland AFB, N.M.
6. 2001–2003, Senior Systems Engineer, Spectrum Astro Incorporated, Gilbert, Ariz.
7. 2003–2004, Registered Representative and Agent, First Command Financial Planning, Glendale, Ariz.
8. 2004–2007, Lead Systems Engineer and Independent Research and Development (IR&D) Program Manager, Lockheed Martin, Goodyear, Ariz.
9. 2006–2007, Horizontal Integration Lead, Lockheed Martin, Goodyear, Ariz.
10. 2007–2009, Deputy Chief, Space Division, Plans and Programs Directorate, AFRL, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
11. 2009–2010, Chief, Transformation Branch, Plans and Programs Directorate, AFRL, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
12. 2010–2011, Chief, Strategic Planning and Transformation Division, Plans and Programs Directorate, AFRL, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
13. 2011–2014, Chief, Systems Engineering Division, Engineering and Technical Management Directorate, Headquarters Air Force Materiel Command, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
14. 2014–2019, Director, Research Collaboration and Computing Directorate, AFRL, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
15. 2019–2022, Vice Director, 711th Human Performance Wing, AFRL, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
16. 2022–present, Director, Materials and Manufacturing Directorate, AFRL, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
MAJOR AWARDS AND HONORS
1999 Air Force Achievement Medal
2000 Air Force Commendation Medal
2004 and 2006, Lockheed Martin Significant and Special Recognition Awards
2008 Air Force Research Laboratory Headquarters Manager of the Quarter, 4th Quarter
2008-2011, 2014-2017, and 2019-2021 Air Force Special Act, Demo and Performance Awards
2013 Air Force Notable Achievement Award
2013 Headquarters Air Force Materiel Command Engineering and Technical Management Civilian of the Year
2014 Air Force Meritorious Civilian Service Medal
(Current as of March 2022)