Less than 500 of the government’s most renowned scientists and engineers serve in senior technical and professional positions. On June 1, Dr. Dana Taylor was selected to serve as a ST/senior research scientist for Aviation and Missile Research Development and Engineering Center’s Aviation Development Directorate.
“One of my biggest challenges will be to figure out how to most effectively use the available resources within AMRDEC,” Taylor said. “The AMRDEC is composed of world class people, tools and facilities, all there in the pursuit of supporting the warfighter. I’ve been away awhile so I need to learn the sometimes complicated relationships between the directorates, and more importantly, the people in the directorates. On the aviation side the U.S. Army in general, and the AMRDEC in particular, is the preeminent rotorcraft research and development organization in the world. I see it as part of my job to remind the country, perhaps the world, of this fact and I feel extraordinarily privileged to be back with the Army at this exciting time.”
“Dr. Taylor will represent Army aviation as the subject matter expert for aircraft design and modification,” said Dr. Bill Lewis, aviation development director. “He possesses a comprehensive knowledge of both the design processes and operational applications of today’s combat aircraft. He will be the key contributor to the applied research, technology assessment, development approach and risk mitigation strategy for Army aviation’s most visible, resourced and critical science and technology activity for the next decade – joint multi-role.”
Prior to his selection at AMRDEC, Taylor was a principal engineer at AeroVironment Inc. focused primarily on aeroelastic analysis of high altitude, long endurance and vertical takeoff and landing unmanned aircraft. Prior to AV he worked for the Army Aviation Systems Command in St. Louis for more than 10 years culminating that portion of his career as the dynamics and analysis branch chief within the Directorate of Engineering. Prior to graduate school Taylor worked as a flight test engineer and a structural dynamicist for Hughes Helicopters Inc. on the AH-64 and H-369 programs.
Taylor holds a doctorate and master’s in aerospace engineering from Georgia Tech and a bachelor’s in mechanical engineering from the University of California at Santa Barbara.
ST positions are a unique category of federal jobs that cover non-executive positions and involve performance of high-level research and development in the physical, biological, medical, or engineering sciences, or a closely-related field. Executive agencies must be granted an SL/ST space allocation from the Office of Personnel Management before filling an SL/ST position. There are approximately 470 ST positions allocated to several executive agencies; the AMRDEC has three of those positions.