Thank You to John Langford for His Service as 2018-2020 AIAA President Written 19 May 2020

 Watch AIAA's Tribute Video to Langford

May 19, 2020 – Reston, Va. – The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) is grateful for John Langford’s leadership as AIAA president during his 2018–2020 term, which ended this week.

“John is an invaluable and dedicated supporter of the aerospace community and AIAA,” said Dan Dumbacher, AIAA executive director. “He helped AIAA grow membership and educational outreach. He inspires the next generation of aerospace engineers through his passionate support of student rocketry and flight challenges. John’s focus on increasing the diversity of the aerospace community is seen in his sponsorship of the Diversity Scholar program, which brings students from underrepresented backgrounds to AIAA forums.

“During John’s presidency, AIAA has expanded into the space economy with a new event, ASCEND. He also was a key supporter of AIAA hosting the International Astronautical Congress last year, the first time IAC had been in the U.S. in 17 years. We thank him for his insight and hard work in helping the Institute continue to be a meaningful force in the industry.”

AIAA’s tribute video to Langford can be watched on AIAA’s YouTube channel. Langford wrote about the highlights and challenges of tenure in his final Flight Path column as AIAA president in the May 2020 issue of Aerospace America.

Langford is now AIAA immediate past president and will serve as president of the AIAA Foundation. He is founder and CEO Emeritus of Aurora Flight Sciences, a Boeing Company, and founder and CEO of

While attending MIT, Langford organized and led a series of human-powered aircraft projects, culminating in the Daedalus Project, which in 1988 shattered the world distance and endurance records for human-powered flight with a 72-mile flight between the Greek islands of Crete and Santorini. Langford established the Daedalus 88 Scholarship to honor the history-making project. 

Media contact: Michele McDonald,, 703.264.7542

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The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) is the world’s largest aerospace technical society. With nearly 30,000 individual members from 91 countries, and 100 corporate members, AIAA brings together industry, academia, and government to advance engineering and science in aviation, space, and defense. For more information, visit, or follow AIAA on TwitterFacebook, or LinkedIn.