Tim Pickens is an entrepreneur, inventor, innovator, engineer and educator. His business, Pickens Innovations, specializes in commercial space, technical product development and solutions, and business consulting and strategy for space and technical companies. He is known for applying a lean philosophy to develop creative solutions and innovative partnerships to provide responsive, low-cost products and services.
Pickens’ 20+ years of experience in the aerospace industry, specializing in the design, fabrication and testing of propulsion hardware system, has earned him a reputation as one of the industry’s leaders in these areas.
Early in his career, Pickens served as propulsion lead for Scaled Composites on SpaceShipOne, winner of the $10 million Ansari X Prize. He also worked for small hardware-rich aerospace companies in Huntsville.
A serial entrepreneur, Pickens founded Orion Propulsion, a Huntsville aerospace company, in 2004 and sold it to Dynetics in 2009 after growing it to a 40-employee, $6.4 million business. Within five years, Orion had received multiple Small Business awards and become AS9100-certified to build man-rated flight hardware.
Pickens served as Commercial Space Advisor and Chief Propulsion Engineer for Huntsville-based Dynetics and as Vice President of Propulsion for Moon Express, a privately funded lunar transportation and data services company.
Popular for his inspiring, genuine and humorous speaking style, Pickens is recruited to give presentations at business, space and motivational conferences all over the country. He has also been featured in national media for his inventions and innovative accomplishments.
Pickens has received numerous awards for business and technical accomplishments.
His hobbies include building things – like rocket-powered vehicles – in his Man Cave. His passion for rockets began when he was a small child in Huntsville and continued into his adult life as a serious hobby. He led multiple amateur rocket design efforts in his garage for community service and recreational clubs and worked as an independent aerospace consultant at night and on weekends. He had a long-time interest in studying applied engineering and science, but the desire to own and operate a space company would drive him to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in business administration.
Pickens also likes to buy, sell and trade space collectibles. He has a passion for space history and artifacts and is interested in bartering.