Jones Partners Thought Leadership Series

2015 is a year in which NASA, and Johnson Space Center (JSC) in particular, will make visible progress toward developing and demonstrating the capabilities needed to pioneer space and eventually get humans to Mars.  They will launch two people on a one-year mission on ISS, putting a spotlight on gaining knowledge about human health and performance for exploration missions.  They will be welding the crew module pressure vessel for Orion’s next flight.  They will be attaching an inflatable module to ISS to compare performance to aluminum modules, and testing advances in space suits, life support, and robotics.

 At the same time, JSC must transform itself in order to stay the leader in the human space flight world. New entrants, new tools, and new processes challenge them to become more lean, agile, and adaptive to change in order to advance human space flight, encapsulated in a change initiative called JSC 2.0.


About Ellen Ochoa
Ellen Ochoa, a veteran astronaut, is the 11th director of the Johnson Space Center. She succeeded Michael L. Coats, who retired at the end of 2012. Prior to being named director, she served the center as deputy director for five years, beginning in 2007.

Ochoa is JSC’s first Hispanic director, and its second female director. Dr. Carolyn L. Huntoon served as JSC director from 1994-95.

Ochoa, who considers La Mesa, Calif., to be her hometown, became the first Hispanic woman to go to space when she served on a nine-day mission aboard the space shuttle Discovery in 1993. She has flown in space four times, logging nearly 1,000 hours in orbit. Prior to her astronaut career, she was a research engineer and inventor, with three patents for optical systems. She is honored to have two schools named for her, the Ellen Ochoa Middle School in Pasco, Wash., and the Ellen Ochoa Learning Center in Cudahy, Calif.

About Yael Hochberg
Professor Hochberg's research and teaching interests are focused on entrepreneurship, innovation, and the financing of entrepreneurial activity. She is also considered one of the foremost experts on accelerator programs, and serves as Managing Director of the annual Seed Accelerator Rankings Project. 

In addition to her doctorate in finance from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business, she holds an undergraduate degree in Industrial Engineering and Management from the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology and a masters degree in Economics from Stanford University. She has previously held faculty positions at the MIT Sloan School of Management, Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and the Johnson School of Management at Cornell University, and was employed in the technology industry in both larger and startup companies.

Organizer Jones Partners


Wed, Mar. 18, 2015
6 p.m. - 7:15 p.m. US/Central


McNair Hall - Rice University
Rice University Loop Rd
Houston, TX 77005
United States