Angelia D. Walker has often been described as an engineer, Mentor, rocket scientist and safety guru. She has worked more than 24 years with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Marshall Space Flight Center in numerous progressively responsible positions in the Safety and Mission Assurance (S&MA) and Engineering Directorates, such as: the Spacecraft and Vehicle Systems Chief of the Systems Engineering and Integration Division where she led 135 System Engineers in the development design integration, and system analysis of the United States’s next heavy lift capability launch vehicle that will carry humans and cargo into deep space and beyond. These missions are targeted for locations such as asteroids, the moon, Lagrange points and Mars.
Before the retiring of the United States Space Shuttle, Walker supported the hardware propulsion elements readiness for the flight for twenty years. She was NASA’s first African American female Quality Engineer for the Solid Rocket Booster and Space Shuttle Main Engine (SSME) Elements as well as its first African American Female to serve as the Space Shuttle Propulsion Elements Deputy Chief Engineer.
Walker was the Senior Safety and Mission Assurance Resident Manager for the Space Shuttle Main Engine Alternate Turbopumps, at Pratt & Whitney, West Palm Beach, Florida and the International Space Station Resident Office, at Boeing, Huntsville, Alabama.
She led the safety team in the development of the Alternate LOX (liquid oxygen) and fuel high-pressure turbopumps for the main engines—assuring clear requirements definition and verifying the design adequacy to accommodate safe delivery of astronauts to low earth orbit and the International Space Station. These missions enabled scientific discovery and human exploration that will benefit life on earth.
She was the Safety, Reliability, & Quality Assurance Policy and Assessment Department Manager conducting independent assessments and continuous risk management of NASA spacecraft and propulsion elements while influencing the core competencies of safety, quality, reliability, and software assurance for the Marshall Space Flight Center. She has also made significant contributions to several Agency Independent Assessment Teams both post-Challenger and Columbia Accidents and supported NASA’s ability to safely return to crewed space flight missions.
At NASA, Ms. Walker has been the recipient of numerous honors and awards such as Supervisor of the Year, the Space Flight Awareness Honoree, the Astronaut’s Silver Snoopy Award, a number of Director’s Commendation Honor Awards, and many Special Service and Group Achievement Awards.