Keynote Speakers

Check back soon for the updated list of keynote speakers for our 2018 conference.

The biographies of last year’s keynote speakers are available below.

Tom Glynn, CEO, Massachusetts Port Authority

Thomas P. Glynn, Ph.D, became Chief Executive Officer of the MassachuTomGlynn.jpgsetts Port Authority on November 1, 2012. In this role he oversees the 1,250 person agency with a $700 million budget
that owns and operates Boston Logan International Airport, the public container and cruise terminals in the Port of Boston, Hanscom Field, Worcester Regional Airport and real estate holdings in South Boston, East Boston and Charlestown. Prior to joining Massport, Glynn was Chief Operating Officer of Partners HealthCare System, the Commonwealth’s largest network of teaching hospitals and neighborhood health centers. His previous roles included General Manager of the MBTA, Deputy Secretary of Labor for the Clinton Administration and Deputy Commissioner of Public Welfare in Massachusetts.
Glynn is a fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration and a former board member of the Council for Excellence in Government. A former lecturer at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, Glynn earned a B.A. in Economics from Tufts University and a Ph.D from the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University.

NigelJacob.pngNigel Jacob, Director, Boston New Urban Mechanics
Nigel Jacob is the Director of Boston’s i-team and Co-founder of the Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics, a civic innovation incubator and R&D Lab within Boston’s City Hall.  Nigel works to develop new models of innovation for cities in the 21st century. Prior to joining the City of Boston in 2006, Nigel worked for and launched a series of technology start-ups in the Boston area. He is also the Urban Technologist in Residence at Living Cities, a board member at organizations such as Code For America and coUrbanize, and is an Executive-in-Residence at Boston University. Nigel’s work has been written about extensively and has earned Nigel a number of awards including being named a Public Official of the year in 2011 by Governing Magazine, a Whitehouse Champion of Change and the Tribeca Disruptive Innovation award for 2012.


Phil McAlister, Director Commercial Spaceflight, NASA

Director, Commercial Spaceflight NASA Philip McAlister is currently the Director of Commercial Spaceflight at NASA Headquarters, where he oversees the management of the Commercial Crew and Cargo Programs. Prior to this assignment he was in NASA’s Office of Program Analysis and Evaluation, where he served as the Executive Director for the Review of US Human Spaceflight Plans Committee (also known as the Augustine Committee). He also led NASA’s efforts on the US National Space Policy. In 2010 he earned NASA’s Exceptional Service Medal.

Prior to NASA, Philip was Director of Futron’s Space and Telecommunications Division, where he managed a division of approximately 20 analysts involved in space industry analysis, market research and technology assessments. Before joining Futron he served as a Senior Manager during a 10-year career at TRW Corporation. Prior to that, he worked as a Technical Analyst for ANSER Corporation.

Over his career, Philip has been involved in commercial, civil and military space programs. He has participated in the development of new launch vehicles, the redesign of the International Space Station, and the advancement of several commercial space ventures.

Philip has an MBA degree from Averett University, an MS in Systems Engineering from George Mason University, and a BS in Physical Sciences from the University of Maryland.

JimCantrell.jpgJim Cantrell, CEO, Vector Space Systems

Jim Cantrell is a well known entrepreneur and expert in space systems and has 30 years of experience in the aerospace and high technology industries. Jim was part of the SpaceX founding team and served as the company’s first Vice President of Business Development. Jim founded two other successful aerospace and automotive engineering companies and has held CEO positions in aerospace and biometric software companies. Jim also played key roles in the development of Skybox Imaging (now Terra Bella) and has had developmental roles in numerous venture funded efforts, including Rocket Lab, Planet, Black Sky, and Spaceflight.