Director of Regulatory

El Segundo, California
Corporate – Launch Safety & Licensing /
Full-time /
ABL Space Systems was founded in 2017 by veterans of SpaceX and Morgan Stanley to develop low-cost launch vehicles for the small satellite industry. More importantly, we’re building a launch system we are truly proud of – no gimmicks or over-design, just reliable, rapidly deployable launches. We’re an ambitious team with big goals and, together, we’re determined to prove that reaching space can be simple, efficient, and routine.  

When launch day arrives, we want you by our side

As Director of Regulatory you will own ABL’s Launch Vehicle Licensing efforts. We are looking for a versatile technical leader, strong in both strategy and execution with proven success achieving and expanding launch vehicle regulatory approvals for both traditional and novel launch programs. Licensing is a key enabler driving us forward to achieve our ambitious mission of improving the ability of humanity to gain access to space. 


    • You will serve as the hands-on leader for not only Licensing, but also continuing to ensure expansion and compliance of our design approvals over time, in alignment with our mission objectives. In addition to being the primary technical interface with the FAA, Federal Ranges (i.e. Vandenberg and Cape Canaveral) and international partners. 
    • Lead and growing a right-sized, world-class Regulatory Operations and Licensing team. 
    • Set and communicate licensing program objectives and priorities including owning the plan for when we will achieve a high-level regulatory milestone all the way to specific document submission dates. 
    • Liaising with the relevant Licensing authorities to demonstrate compliance with CFR Part 450 and compliance with RCC 319 and RCC 324 for ABL Vehicles. 
    • Implement operational safety role and verify compliance with regulatory requirements for launch and ground operations. 
    • Leading strategy and issue papers to define new approaches for non-traditional launch sites, rapid and responsive flights and scaling access to space.
    • Ensuring critical cross-team efforts are well owned (including owning some yourself) such as driving to agreement with the FAA on adequate detect and avoid performance as well as the internal plan to exceed it, resolving a critical safety issue, or ensuring compliance with a cross-cutting regulatory requirement.
    • Leading cross-functional regulatory milestone readiness reviews, assuring the cross-functional teams are aligned and the program is ready to submit a major Licensing amendment.
    • Collaborating closely with the global policy team to ensure policy initiatives align with aviation launch regulatory objectives.


    • Bachelor’s degree or higher in aerospace engineering or equivalent.
    • 10+ years of industry experience in progressive technical and leadership roles.
    • 5+ years of direct experience working with government counterparts.


    • Experience building and leading teams.
    • Experience completing regulatory certification with government counter parts. 
    • Experience certifying launch vehicles with the FAA or Ranges. 
    • Experience with FMEA analysis, and reliability analysis, and hazard analysis. 
    • Ability to manage complex programs across multiple disciplines to complete on time.  
    • Experience working at the FAA or Ranges on Flight Safety is a major plus. 


    • Critical thinking:  ABL engineers understand the “why” behind all design decisions, operational events and test outcomes.
    • Ability to deal with ambiguity: ABL engineers must be comfortable defining their own pathway to an objective.
    • End-to end ownership:  projects are delivered fully complete and ready for flight.


    • Ability to travel on short notice (Expect 10% travel).  
    • Ability to sit or stand for extended periods of time.   
    • Ability to use a computer to complete assignments.  
    • Ability to communicate with individuals and groups in person, by phone and telepresence.   
    • While performing the duties of this job, the employee will typically work in an office environment.  
$190,000 - $250,000 a year
The salary range for this role is $190,000 - $250,000. This is the lowest to highest salary we reasonably and in good faith believe we would pay for this role at the time of this posting. We may ultimately pay more or less than the posted range, and the range may be modified in the future. An employee’s pay position within the salary range will be based on several factors including, but not limited to, relevant education, qualifications, certifications, experience, skills, geographic location, performance, and business or organizational needs. 
ITAR Requirement
This position requires access to information protected under US export control laws, including the International Traffic in Arms Regulations and/or the Export Administration Regulations.  As such, US person status (including US citizens, permanent residents, asylees, and refugees) is a required qualification for this position.

Equal Opportunity Employer
We are an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy), sexual orientation, gender identity and/or expression, national origin, protected veteran status, disability, genetics, or citizenship status (when otherwise legally authorized to work and access export-controlled data) and will not be discriminated against on the basis of such characteristics or any other status protected by the laws or regulations in the locations where we operate. We encourage applicants of all ages.