Space startup Momentus hires former U.S. defense official as CEO

SPACE-EXPLORATION
Former U.S. Under Secretary of Defense for Policy John Rood. Courtesy Dept of Defense

July 14, 2021

(Reuters) – Momentus Inc on Wednesday named former U.S. Under Secretary of Defense for Policy John Rood as chief executive officer, a day after the U.S. markets regulator charged the space exploration firm with misleading claims over a planned merger.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday said Momentus along with blank-check company Stable Road Acquisition Corp and its sponsor SRC-NI misled investors about Momentus’s technology and national security risks associated with its former CEO Mikhail Kokorich.

California-based Momentus sells in-space shuttle services that help move satellites between orbits.

Rood, who will take over as Momentus CEO on Aug. 1, previously worked for the White House National Security Council and Central Intelligence Agency.

Earlier, he also served as senior vice president of Lockheed Martin Corp’s international business and vice president at Raytheon Company.

Dawn Harms, who was serving as the company’s interim CEO since January will step down from board and return to her prior role as chief revenue officer, Momentus said.

(Reporting by Eva Mathews and Akanksha Rana in Bengaluru; Editing by Ramakrishnan M.)