Celeste Volz Ford
ENTREPRENEUR AND BUSINESS LEADER
Celeste Ford is the Founder and CEO of Stellar Solutions, Inc. Stellar Solutions is a global provider of systems engineering, integration and program management expertise, and a recognized leader in government and commercial programs related to the aerospace field, focusing on high-impact projects and satisfying customer critical needs in alignment with employees’ dream jobs. Celeste is a proven leader of the Stellar constellation of companies. Stellar Solutions, founded in 1995, offers end-to-end critical expertise and problem-solving skills to significant programs including defense-related intelligence projects, international telecommunications programs, commercial imagery and NASA’s planetary and earth science missions. QuakeFinder, the humanitarian R&D division of Stellar Solutions founded in 2001, is the world’s leading private earthquake forecasting research organization, dedicated to the discovery of methods for warning communities of imminent destructive earthquakes. Stellar Solutions Aerospace Limited (UK-based affiliate), based in the United Kingdom and founded in 2004, provides engineering services to overseas markets, and the Stellar Solutions Foundation established in 1998 supports community-based organizations and charities.
Over the course of her career, Celeste has assumed positions of increasing responsibility, each of which prepared her for the leadership position she holds today. She began her career as a guidance and control engineer for COMSAT (Communications Satellite Corporation) in 1978. She left COMSAT to become a project manager at the Aerospace Corporation, where her work with NASA on the Space Shuttle Program led to recognition as “Woman of the Year” in 1984. Celeste then joined Scitor Corporation where she successfully started and grew a satellite launch business area. In 1995, she founded Stellar Solutions, which she has guided to a position of international prominence as a global provider of aerospace engineering expertise.
Celeste holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Notre Dame and a Master of Science from Stanford University, both in Aerospace Engineering. She is a member of the Board of Trustees of the University of Notre Dame, Director of Simpson Manufacturing Company and American Conservatory Theater, and member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She is a recognized and respected personality in her field, having served on congressional commissions as well as on panels focused on entrepreneurship and women in business. She is also an active advocate of community and charity outreach. She has been recognized with numerous honors, including Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year, Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame, Fortune Small Business Magazine Best Bosses, and Women in Aerospace Leadership Award. She resides in Portola Valley, CA with her husband and they have three grown children.