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Norman R. Augustine

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Norman R. Augustine
Norman Ralph Augustine.jpg
Norman Augustine, chair of the Human Space Flight Review Committee, at the Carnegie Institution in Washington.
Norman Ralph Augustine

(1935-07-27) July 27, 1935 (age 83)
EducationPrinceton University (B.S.)
OccupationChairman of the Review of United States Human Space Flight Plans Committee

Norman Ralph Augustine (born July 27, 1935) is a U.S. aerospace businessman who served as United States Under Secretary of the Army from 1975 to 1977. Augustine served as chairman of the Review of United States Human Space Flight Plans Committee.

YouTube Encyclopedic

  • 1/5
  • UMUC Commencement Keynote: The Honorable Norman R. Augustine - Sunday Afternoon, May 14, 2017
  • Norm Augustine - 2014 National Air and Space Museum Trophy Winner
  • General James E. Hill Lifetime Space Achievement Award Presentation: 29th National Space Symposium
  • Norman Augustine Principles of Engineering Leadership Technion
  • St. Augustine, Florida


>> Well thank you Mr. President for that generous introduction, it somehow reminds me of my first day serving on the faculty at Princeton and having spent my entire career up until that time in either industry or government I was invited to deliver the welcoming address to the incoming freshmen engineers. As the dean was making his opening comments I was busily flipping through my lecture notes not paying much attention to what he was saying then suddenly I heard him remark and now we'll hear from Professor Augustine. And for just an instant, this is true, the thought went through my mind gee what a coincidence they have some guy here by the same name as me. But in the spirit of full disclosure, I should also note that when I was granted an honorary degree by my alma mater, an event at which I took great pride, the New York Times story about the event carried the headline Mohammed Ali and three others receive Princeton degrees. I'd like to begin my remarks on this very special day by adding my best wishes to all the mothers who are present. And it's also my privilege to extend greetings and congratulations from the regents of the university system of Maryland to those of you who are graduating today. You are members of a particularly noteworthy class that's being the 70th anniversary of UMUC. One of my most admired friends, the late General Jack Vessey, the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, is among the long list of distinguished graduates of this institution. And in my judgment to receive a degree from UMUC there's a particularly special distinction. And I say this because you've earned your degrees the hard way, holding down jobs, raising families, volunteering in your communities and serving your country. In short, you are the kind of people that I most admire. You exemplify the qualities of selflessness, perseverance, dedication and yes hard work. And similar credit goes to the members of your families who share in the accomplishment that we celebrate today. Now as the accepted role of rule graduation speaker I'll offer a few pieces of worldly advice. And I must confess that I can't recall what pieces of worldly advice the speaker at my own graduation offered. In fact, I can't even recall whom it was that offered whatever was offered. I can only recall that it was offered in Latin, which of course was a great thrill for those of us who were engineers. Offering advice to as experienced and accomplished group of graduates as you is obviously not a simple undertaking. Nonetheless, I'm going to offer not one, but eight pieces of advice, none in Latin. And to those of you who are not inclined to listen just remember I am a rocket scientist. But as New York Yankee owner George Steinbrenner always told his new managers, I won't keep you long. [ Laughter ] First, I would simply remind you of something you certainly have already observed and that is as important as is your degree, as important as is your health there's something far more important than either and that is your reputation. And I say that not because graduation speakers are expected to say that, they are of course, I say that because I have had highly accomplished friends who destroyed their lives because of a single slip in their reputational sphere. Second, it's been my observation that in most undertakings motivation will beat mere talent almost every time. I'd hasten to emphasize a combination of motivation and talent is virtually unbeatable. I've often been struck by how many of the people who moved to the very top ranks of their fields did not have four digit IQs or Ivy league diplomas or parents who were millionaires, but rather were simply highly dedicated to what they were doing and worked very hard and very selflessly in doing it. Third, I would proffer the contrarian view that it's not useful to spend too much time planning the rest of one's life. Be assured that I subscribe to the perspective of that great philosopher Yogi Berra who warned that if you don't know where you're going you could wind up somewhere else. But it is of course important to have a general sense of where you want to go. And for example, if you want to become a neurosurgeon it's probably a good idea to go to medical school. It's also important to prepare oneself broadly and to take advantage of opportunities as they present themselves. As a colleague of mine used to remind, when opportunity knocks try to answer the door. Fourth, when pursuing a career, it's important to focus upon present responsibilities and not worry about getting ahead. And the great irony is that the best way to get ahead seems to be to focus not on getting ahead. No one has said that better than Sir William Osler who's considered by many to be the father of modern western medicine. He counseled and I quote, I've had personal ideals, one to do the day's work well and not to bother about tomorrow. It is to it more than anything else I owe whatever success I've had to this power of settling down to the day's work and trying to do it well to the best of one's ability and let the future take care of itself. Fifth, I would encourage you to gauge worthy pursuits outside of your regular responsibilities. And if you do you will find much greater satisfaction in life. Some years ago, a business colleague of mine, a vice president of our firm, stopped by my office on the day he retired. When he said that he wasn't sure what he was going to do with his new free time, I suggested that he become a Red Cross volunteer. About three years passed before I heard from him again, then one day a tattered, water stained letter written in pencil and lined notebook paper showed up in my mail and it was from my friend and the letter began, I've just spent my entire day standing in water up to my knees handing out rolls of toilet paper. The letter continued, for some reason I thought of you. But this letter concluded with a sentence, it was one of the finest days of my life. Sixth, I'm told that in medical school it's very common at graduations for the dean to announce, I'm sorry to inform you, but half of what we have taught you is wrong and the problem is that we don't know which half. I'm afraid that medicine is not alone in suffering from this affliction. This means you'll have to continue learning throughout your life. The alternative is to become professionally middle-aged a decade from now. Some have even suggested that graduation diplomas should have expiration dates printed on them, be sure to check yours. Seventh, there's a saying that life is what happens while you were making plans. Life does have a way of slipping by and take my word of it, try to prioritize how you devote your time. Sadly, as you've already found, there are compromises to be made, you can't do everything, but you can do a lot. Set big goals, seek worthy challenges. Newt Gingrich once asked me if I knew why lions don't hunt chipmunks and when I assured him that I didn't he replied because if they catch them they starve to death. But finally, we come to the piece of advice you've all been eagerly waiting, the last one. For this I would simply observe that life is not a spectator sport nor is it a dress rehearsal and the greatest regrets in life are not the opportunities one pursued and failed, but are the opportunities one failed to pursue. Everyone is periodically confronted with decisions as to whether to remain in their comfort zone [inaudible] the status quo or in the words of Robert Frost, to take the road less traveled and I hope that you will do the latter. Well so much for advice, Winston Churchill once said that you can always count on the Americans to do the right thing after they've tried everything else. And my wish for you is that you're able to do the right thing on the very first try. Now bring on the diplomas. Thank you. [ Applause ]



Augustine was raised in Colorado and attended Princeton University, where he graduated with a BSE in Aeronautical Engineering, magna cum laude, and an MSE. He was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, Tau Beta Pi and Sigma Xi.

In 1958 he joined the Douglas Aircraft Company in California, where he worked as a research engineer, program manager and chief engineer. Beginning in 1965, he served in the Office of the Secretary of Defense as Assistant Director of Defense Research and Engineering. He joined LTV Missiles and Space Company in 1970, serving as vice president of advanced programs and marketing. In 1973 he returned to the government as Assistant Secretary of the Army and in 1975 became Under Secretary of the Army, and later Acting Secretary of the Army. Joining Martin Marietta Corporation in 1977 as vice president of technical operations, he was elected as CEO in 1987 and chairman in 1988, having previously been president and COO. In 1990, he chaired the Advisory Committee on the Future of the U.S. Space Program, known as the Augustine Committee. He served as president of the Lockheed Martin Corporation upon the formation of that company in 1995, and became CEO later that year. He retired as chairman and CEO of Lockheed Martin in August 1997, when he became a lecturer with the rank of professor[1] on the faculty of Princeton University where he served until July 1999.

In 1999 he helped found In-Q-Tel, a venture capital firm sponsored by the CIA with a mandate to support United States intelligence by investing in advanced technology.[2][3]

Augustine was chairman and principal officer of the American Red Cross for nine years, chairman of the National Academy of Engineering, president and chairman of the Association of the United States Army, chairman of the Aerospace Industries Association, and chairman of the Defense Science Board. He is a former president of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics and the Boy Scouts of America. He is a former member of the board of directors of ConocoPhillips, Black & Decker, Procter & Gamble and Lockheed Martin, and was a member of the board of trustees of Colonial Williamsburg. He is a regent of the University System of Maryland, trustee emeritus of Johns Hopkins and a former member of the board of trustees of Princeton and MIT. He is a member of the advisory board to the Department of Homeland Security, was a member of the Hart/Rudman Commission on National Security, and served for 16 years on the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. He is a member of the guiding coalition of the Project on National Security Reform. He is a member of the American Philosophical Society, the National Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the Explorers Club.

In May 2009 Augustine was named as chairman of the Review of United States Human Space Flight Plans Committee, that was tasked to review NASA's plans for the Moon, Mars and beyond.[4]

In March 2011 Augustine agreed to serve as chair of the U.S. Antarctic Program Blue Ribbon Panel to assess U.S. activities in the South Pole. In July 2011, Augustine became a member of the United States Energy Security Council,[5] which seeks to diminish oil's monopoly over the US transportation sector and is sponsored by the Institute for the Analysis of Global Security (IAGS).[5] He currently sits on the America Abroad Media advisory board,[6] the advisory board of Feynman School, a school for academically gifted children in STEM fields,[7] and on the board of advisors of the Code of Support Foundation, a nonprofit military services organization.[8]

Augustine has been presented the National Medal of Technology by the President of the United States and received the Joint Chiefs of Staff Distinguished Public Service Award. He has five times received the Department of Defense's highest civilian decoration, the Distinguished Civilian Service Award. He is co-author of The Defense Revolution and Shakespeare In Charge and author of Augustine's Laws and Augustine’s Travels. He holds 34 honorary degrees and was selected by Who’s Who in America and the Library of Congress as one of “Fifty Great Americans” on the occasion of Who’s Who’s fiftieth anniversary. He has traveled in over 124 countries and stood on both the North and South Poles of the earth.


Graphical plot of Augustine's law Number XVI: "In the year 2054, the entire defense budget will purchase just one aircraft."[9]
Graphical plot of Augustine's law Number XVI: "In the year 2054, the entire defense budget will purchase just one aircraft."[9]
  • Eagle Scout, 1952
  • National Space Club Goddard Award, 1991
  • Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, 1992[10]
  • Rotary National Award for Space Achievement National Space Trophy, 1992[11]
  • Silver Buffalo Award, 1994
  • Electronic Industries Association Medal of Honor, 1994
  • The Washingtonian's Business Leader of the Year, 1997
  • The NASA Distinguished Public Service Medal, 1997
  • Space Foundation's General James E. Hill Lifetime Space Achievement Award in 2002. The highest honor bestowed by the Space Foundation, the award recognizes outstanding individuals who have distinguished themselves through lifetime contributions to the welfare of betterment of humankind through the exploration, development and use of space, or the use of space technology, information, themes or resources in academic, cultural, industrial or other pursuits of broad benefit to humanity. Augustine was the first recipient.
  • Public Welfare Medal from the National Academy of Sciences, 2006[12]
  • USO's Freedom's Finest Award, 2004
  • The Harold W. McGraw Hill, Jr. Prize in Education, 2006
  • The 2006 BENS Eisenhower Award [Business Executives for National Security]
  • The 2007 Bower Award for Business Leadership, from The Franklin Institute.
  • NAA Wright Brothers Memorial Trophy, 2008
  • National Science Board Vannevar Bush Award, 2008
  • IRI Medal from the Industrial Research Institute, 2009
  • The American Chemical Society Public Service Award, 2009
  • B. Kenneth West Lifetime Achievement Award, 2009
  • NAS Award in Aeronautical Engineering from the National Academy of Sciences, 2010[13]
  • Drexel University Engineering Leader of the year, 2011
  • The Wings Club Distinguished Achievement Award, 2011[14]
  • Character Education Partnership's American Patriot of Character Award, 2012
  • Montgomery County Business Hall of Fame, 2012
  • Industry Week Manufacturing Hall of Fame, 2012
  • Smithsonian Air & Space Museum, Lifetime Achievement Trophy Award, 2014
  • Arthur C. Clarke Lifetime Achievement Award, 2014
  • Advisory Board, Journal of Science Policy & Governance, 2015[15]
  • American Astronautical Society Space Flight Award, 2015
  • Tech Council of Maryland Lifetime Achievement Award, 2015
  • International Von Karman Wings Award, 2015 (For his visionary leadership, contributions to the aerospace industry and distinguished service to the nation's defense, security and space programs)[16]
  • Air Force Distinguished Public Service Award, 2016
  • Maryland International Business Leaders Award, 2016
  • Lockheed Martin Corp. Organizational Leadership Development Program Award, 2016
  • National Institutes of Health Director’s Award, 2016
  • National Defense University Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award, 2016
  • Sigma Xi Honorary Scientific Research Inaugural Gold Key Award, 2016
  • American Red Cross National Capital Region Lifetime Service Award, 2016


  1. ^ "Norman Augustine to Join the Faculty of Princeton University's School of Engineering and Applied Science". Retrieved 7 July 2015.
  2. ^ Powers, Shawn M; Jablonski, Michael (April 2015). The Real Cyber War. Champaign, IL: University of Illinois Press. pp. 63–69. ISBN 978-0-252-09710-2.
  3. ^ Yannuzzi, Rick E. (2007). "In-Q-Tel: A new partnership between the CIA and the private sector". Central Intelligence Agency.
  4. ^ Mirelson, Doc (2009-06-01). "NASA Announces Members of Human Space Flight Review Committee". Retrieved 2009-06-05.
  5. ^ a b "Energy and Security Research". Retrieved 6 July 2012.
  6. ^
  7. ^ "Advisory Board". Feynman School. 2013-10-11. Retrieved 2017-10-17.
  8. ^ "Code of Support Foundation advisory board". Retrieved 5 June 2017.
  9. ^ Norman Ralph Augustine (1984). Augustine's Laws. ISBN 978-1-56347-240-4.
  10. ^ "Book of Members, 1780–2010: Chapter A" (PDF). American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Retrieved 27 April 2011.
  11. ^ "1992 NATIONAL SPACE TROPHY RECIPIENT" (Press release). Rotary National Award for Space Achievement Foundation. 2011-04-04. Retrieved 2011-04-18.
  12. ^ "Public Welfare Award". National Academy of Sciences. Retrieved 14 February 2011.
  13. ^ "J. C. Hunsaker Award in Aeronautical Engineering". National Academy of Sciences. Retrieved 14 February 2011.
  14. ^ "Distinguished Achievement Awards". Wings Club. Retrieved February 9, 2012.
  15. ^
  16. ^ "The 2015 recipient of International Von Karman Wings Award is Mr. Norman Augustine". The Aerospace Historical Society and California Institute of Technology. Retrieved 2015-06-08.


Government offices
Preceded by
Herman R. Staudt
United States Under Secretary of the Army
May 1975 – July 1977
Succeeded by
Walter B. LaBerge
Preceded by
Eugene Fubini
Chairman of the Defense Science Board
Succeeded by
Charles A. Fowler
Business positions
Preceded by
Thomas G. Pownall
CEO of Martin Marietta
Office abolished
New office CEO of Lockheed Martin
Succeeded by
Vance D. Coffman
Boy Scouts of America
Preceded by
John L. Clendenin
National President
Succeeded by
John W. Creighton Jr.
This page was last edited on 7 December 2018, at 18:24
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