Kara Cunzeman

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Systems Director for Strategic Foresight, Center for Space Policy and Strategy

Kara Cunzeman is the director of strategic foresight within the Center for Space Policy and Strategy at The Aerospace Corporation. Cunzeman championed and founded the Strategic Foresight directorate at Aerospace and serves as its first director. In her role, Cunzeman leads an “A” team of incredible thinkers who are focused on cultivating a formalized approach to futures thinking through the discipline of strategic foresight, helping the enterprise adequately prepare its organizations and capabilities to proactively shape the future through innovative approaches across strategy, acquisition, science, technology portfolio management, policy, and operations. Cunzeman is an experienced professional who is a recognized, trusted advisor and transformative thought leader for executive leadership across government, academia, and industry. Cunzeman is a confirmed “mad scientist,” as declared by the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC), a member of the Federal Foresight Community of Interest, and a frequent guest speaker.

Cunzeman joined Aerospace in 2015, and served five years with Aerospace’s Project West Wing, providing thought leadership and strategic insight into critical issues for the nation spanning global space advancements, technology development, and threat futures to a broad range of customers across Department of Defense, intelligence community, and civil sectors.

Prior to working at Aerospace, Cunzeman held roles in space systems engineering, vehicle operations, and space sensor development at Raytheon and General Atomics. Before that, she was at Packer Engineering, where her contributions were key to winning Phase II funding via a NASA Small Business in Innovation Research (SBIR) award for extracting oxygen from lunar soil.

Cunzeman received her bachelor’s degree in multidisciplinary engineering and a master’s degree in aeronautics and astronautics engineering from Purdue University. She is also a certified foresight practitioner and guest instructor at the Institute for the Future and the Center for Intelligence Studies, International Space University, American University, and George Washington University