Director, Test Site Operations

Director, Test Site Operations

companyRocket Lab
locationJohn C. Stennis Space Center, MS, USA
PublishedPublished: 3/15/2024
Full Time


Rocket Lab is a global leader in launch and space systems. The rockets and satellites we build and launch enable some of the most ambitious and vital space missions globally, supporting scientific exploration, Earth observation and missions to combat climate change, national security, and exciting new technology demonstrations. Our Electron rocket has provided reliable access to orbit since 2018, becoming one of the most frequently launched rockets in the world. Neutron will be our next rocket on the launch pad, an advanced 13-tonne payload class, reusable rocket to launch the mega constellations of the future. Our space systems business includes our extensive line of satellites and components that have enabled more than 1,700 missions including the James Webb Space Telescope, NASA Psyche Mission, Artemis I, Mars Ingenuity helicopter, and more.  

Join our pioneering team and launch your career to new heights!


The role of the Director, Test Site Operations is responsible for overseeing operations at Rocket Lab’s Test Facility on site at Stennis Space Center. The scope of operations at this site includes leadership and responsibility for the engineering team who are designing and building the site and then will transition into Archimedes Engine hotfire operations.

Being an early stage and foundational role, this role will need to wear many hats and take a hands-on approach to seeing various projects through from facility construction and setup, hiring of staff through to site administration and logistics. You’ll first work to integrate with the existing site leadership and take an increasing role as operations transition to production and site staff grows accordingly.


  • Deliver end to end test capabilities and related systems at the site as well as leveraging outsourced capability to deliver site deliverables.
  • Build and maintain a team of technical staff to support testing, test stand build, assembly, execution.
  • Develop project plans, budgets and schedules
  • Ensure the successful delivery of key projects spanning multiple departments and disciplines, through direct project management and/or overseeing project leaders within the department
  • Develop and maintain close relationships between various functions within the Neutron Organization as well as company-wide functions. Negotiate on matters of resource and priority
  • Provide regular and timely project status updates to working groups, management meetings and/or in support of board reports as required
  • Develop and maintain close relationships with Test teams to support rapid iteration in early development
  • Manage, mentor, and support staff to be motivated, effective, and efficient in their roles
  • Identify and provide opportunities for professional development, including coaching for personal development objectives
  • Ensure recruitment and resourcing needs are met to support the annual operating plan, including an active role in candidate search
  • Ensure direct reports understand their role and responsibilities and receive timely feedback on their performance, both formal and informal
  • Ensure health and safety policies and standard operating procedures are followed in the department and ensure your own and others safety at all times


  • Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineer or other technical discipline
  • 12+ years+ of experience in Propulsion Engineering and/or Propulsion  Test leadership supporting high paced technical projects requiring high quality standards
  • Excellent interpersonal skills to drive outcomes
  • Proven capability with building and running high performing teams
  • Strong work ethic, and ability to leverage Rocket Lab’s existing global team and facilities


  • Master's degree in a technical discipline
  • Extensive experience in aerospace systems development and testing
  • Experience with liquid natural gas propellant systems
  • General exposure to rocket engines and rocket vehicle operations


We’re on a mission to unlock the potential of space to improve life on Earth, but that’s not an easy task. It takes hard work, determination, relentless innovation, teamwork, grit, and an unwavering commitment to achieving what others often deem impossible. Our people out-think, out-work and out-pace. We pride ourselves on having each other’s backs, checking our egos at the door, and rolling up our sleeves on all tasks big and small. We thrive under pressure, work to tight deadlines, and our focus is always on how we can deliver, rather than dwelling on the challenges that stand in the way.   

Important information:


To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, including the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), Rocket Lab Employees must be a U.S. citizen, lawful U.S. permanent resident (i.e., current Green Card holder), or lawfully admitted into the U.S. as a refugee or granted asylum, or be eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State and/or the U.S. Department of Commerce, as applicable. Learn more about ITAR here.

Rocket Lab provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment and prohibits discrimination and harassment of any type without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, disability status, genetics, protected veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment at Rocket Lab, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation and training.

Applicants requiring a reasonable accommodation for the application/interview process for a job in the United States should contact Giulia Biow at g.biow@rocketlabusa.com.This dedicated resource is intended solely to assist job seekers with disabilities whose disability prevents them from being able to apply/interview. Only messages left for this purpose will be considered. A response to your request may take up to two business days.


For security reasons background checks will be undertaken prior to any employment offers being made to an applicant.  These checks will include nationality checks as it is a requirement of this position that you be eligible to access equipment and data regulated by the United States' International Traffic in Arms Regulations. 

Under these Regulations, you may be ineligible for this role if you do not hold citizenship of Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Switzerland, the European Union or a country that is part of NATO, or if you hold ineligible dual citizenship or nationality.  For more information on these Regulations, click here ITAR Regulations.