Dr. Donna Cowell Senft, a Senior Level Executive, is Chief Scientist, Air Force Global Strike Command, Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana. She serves as the AFGSC commander’s adviser on science, technology, technology transition and innovation on topics related to AFGSC core area programs. As Chief Scientist, she also engages subject area experts, conducts efforts leading to technological enhancement of AFGSC capabilities and advises on the status and scientific and technical quality of AFGSC, Air Force and Department of Defense programs and solutions to AFGSC needs.
Dr. Senft’s career has spanned both fundamental and applied research, technology transition to Air Force and DoD missions and scientific and technical management. Her previous position was Chief Scientist, Air Mobility Command. She has performed research in a number of technical fields and is the author of four patents and numerous technical articles in the areas of friction and wear, nanotechnology, spacecraft power and surface science. She served a postdoctoral appointment at Sandia National Laboratories in the Materials Performance and Reliability branch. At the Air Force Research Laboratory Space Vehicles Directorate, she held positions as bench-level researcher, Advanced Space Power Program Manager, Chief of the Spacecraft Component Technologies Branch and Technical Area Lead for Responsive Space. Dr. Senft also served as AFRL Mission Area Lead for Space Communications, Positioning, Navigation and Timing, creating and managing a diverse portfolio that included technologies for next-generation space communications, GPS spacecraft and GPS-denied navigation.
Dr. Senft earned a Bachelor of Science in Engineering Science from Pennsylvania State University, University Park and a Master of Science in Physics and a Doctor of Philosophy in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.