SAN DIEGO, June 11, 1999 – International Launch Services (ILS) today announced the appointment of Leonard R. Dest as executive vice president. Dest will support President Wilbur C. Trafton in running the day-to-day activities of ILS, focusing on international marketing and sales and customer service.
"Len Dest brings 25 years of commercial space systems technical and management experience to ILS, including expertise in the international arena," said Trafton. "Most significantly, his experience as a previous customer of ILS will bring a broader view of customer needs to the organization, expanding upon our already strong commitment to customer satisfaction."
Dest joins ILS from Hughes Space and Communications International in Los Angeles, CA, where he served as executive vice president of international business development. In that capacity, he was responsible for international marketing, planning and strategy for the company's commercial satellites. His immediate past positions with Hughes included senior vice president of marketing and vice president and director of advanced programs. Prior to joining Hughes, Dest gained experience in program engineering and management with INTELSAT and COMSAT.
Dest has authored or co-authored nearly a dozen publications on the space systems industry. He holds both bachelor's and master's degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Lehigh University in Bethlehem, PA.
Formed in 1995, International Launch Services (ILS) is an international joint venture of Lockheed Martin and Russia's Khrunichev State Research and Production Space Center and RSC Energia. ILS jointly markets commercial launch services on the Russian-built Proton and the Lockheed Martin Astronautics-built Atlas to the worldwide satellite launch market. The company is headquartered in San Diego, Calif.