The World's Forum for Aerospace Leadership

  • Donate
  • Press Room
  • Renew
  • View Cart
The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA)

is the world's largest technical society dedicated to the global aerospace profession.

  • ARC
  • AIAA Foundation
  • Industry Guide
Dr. Merlin Dorfman Honors Dr. Joseph Reagan with a Memorial Gift

Dr. Merlin Dorfman Honors Dr. Joseph Reagan with a Memorial Gift to the AIAA Foundation

Dr. Merlin Dorfman, an AIAA member since 1958, reminisces back to the day he first met Dr. Joseph Reagan. “I knew who Joe was, but didn’t really get to know him until we were made AIAA Fellows the same year, and were seated at the same table for the Fellows dinner. We had a wonderful evening, and have been friends ever since that evening.”

Reagan often supported AIAA Foundation student events, including judging Region VI student paper conferences. “A gift to the AIAA Foundation, supporting the next generation of engineers in Joe’s name as he had done throughout his life, seemed apropos,” says Dorfman.



Dr. Joseph ReaganJoseph B. Reagan
November 26, 1934 – August 14, 2011

Dr. Joseph B. Reagan received B.S. and M.S. degrees in Physics from Boston College and earned his Ph.D. in Space Science from Stanford University in 1975. He joined Lockheed Missiles and Space Company in 1959 as a scientist. He retired in 1996 as Corporate Vice President and General Manager of Lockheed's Palo Alto Research Development Division (RDD). During his career, Dr. Reagan was responsible for the development and on-orbit deployment of more than 20 scientific satellite payloads for NASA and the U.S. Department of Defense. He was especially proud of his work on the Discoverer/Corona project and on the underground nuclear testing at the Nevada Test Site during the 1960s and early 1970s. He was principal or co-principal author of more than 110 published papers. In addition to being a Fellow of AIAA, he was a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a member of the Stanford University and University of California at Berkeley Engineering Schools' Advisory Councils. Says Dorfman, “As a space pioneer and a good friend, Joe will be missed, but his legacy will live on.”

Make an investment in the future with the AIAA Foundation, which ignites interest in science and technology through STEM K-12 education programs; prepares students for the workforce with scholarships and student conferences; promotes professional achievement via our Honors and Awards Programs for industry professionals and educators; and fosters innovation through competitions that push the envelope of current technologies. For more information on the AIAA Foundation and the Memorial Fund, please visit or call 703.264.7518.