Sierra Space taps veteran Boeing lobbyist to helm new government strategy

WASHINGTON : Sierra Nevada Corp’s space unit, Sierra Space, has tapped Boeing’s former top lobbyist to lead a new, more aggressive government relations shop as the company courts government customers for its planned commercial space station.

Tim Keating, a veteran political strategist who pushed Boeing through numerous procurement campaigns for over a decade, joined Sierra in early March as its Chief Strategy Officer and Senior Vice President of Global Government Operations, Keating told Reuters.

Sierra Space, owned by billionaire couple Fatih and Eren Ozmen, is one of a handful of space industry players attempting to build a private space station that NASA hopes will replace the two decade-old International Space Station by 2030. Before Keating, the firm’s lobbying efforts were led by one person.

“It wasn’t really the emphasis, and now we’re going to build out a team,” Keating, who was also senior vice president of global government relations at Honeywell, said in an interview. “It’s going to be helping to tell our story, getting aggressive where we can.”

Partnering with billionaire founder Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin, Sierra sees NASA and other countries’ space agencies as crucial early customers for its planned space station, a massive orbital research lab and tourist destination dubbed Orbital Reef.

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