PE-backed Schafer Corp announces new hire

Schafer Corp., which is backed by Metalmark Capital, has hired Franklin L. Van Rensselaer, Jr. as senior vice president for civil and military aerospace. Previously, he served as vice president of the NASA business for the government communications systems division of Harris Corp. in Melbourne, Florida. Headquartered in Arlington, Virginia, Schafer Corp. is a provider of scientific, engineering, and technical services and products that work toward defeating national security threats.


ARLINGTON, Va. (PRWEB) November 15, 2013
Schafer Corporation, a scientific, engineering and operational support organization providing high-end technical solutions to mission critical challenges, has appointed Franklin L. Van Rensselaer, Jr. Senior Vice President for Civil and Military Aerospace. Mr. Van Rensselaer will also lead Schafer’s strategic business development initiatives.
“Franklin has had a long career in the aerospace industry in both the public and private sector. He was involved with NASA programs working for or with NASA for the majority of his career and his experience runs the gamut from concept through actual flight,” said Dr. Michael Griffin, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Schafer Corporation. “He has extensive experience with startup companies, as well as large aerospace companies, which will play an integral role as Schafer continues to grow.”
In his new role, Van Rensselaer will be responsible for leading the corporate strategic planning and developing new business corporate wide. He also is leading one of the three Schafer Sectors, the Aerospace sector. Schafer is in an aggressive growth mode across the corporation and the Aerospace Sector, located in Albuquerque and Huntsville, is a strategic growth focus in the Military as well as the Civil and Commercial sectors.
Prior to joining Schafer Corporation, he was Vice President of the NASA business for the Government Communications Systems Division of Harris Corporation in Melbourne, Florida, Vice President and Site Executive for Raytheon’s St. Petersburg, Florida, facility and also Director of Space Programs within Network Centric Systems Division. Before joining Raytheon, he was Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Space Data International.
Before forming his own company, Mr. Van Rensselaer was Corporate Vice President of Business Development for Fairchild Space and Defense. He also served as NASA Space Systems Director for Martin Marietta and also was Vice President of the Commercial Titan venture. He served as a member of the Board of Directors and Executive Vice President–Programs for Orbital Sciences Corporation during the early stages of the company’s development.
Mr. Van Rensselaer held various management positions with NASA during a 20-year period before moving into the private sector. He began his career with NASA right out of college at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) as a propulsion engineer working with the Von Braun team developing the Saturn V moon rocket. He then moved to Johnson Space Center, leading a team of flight controllers responsible for the Saturn V real time flight operations. He and his flight control team received numerous awards for real time actions during the missions for Apollo, Skylab, and Apollo/Soyuz Test Program. Frank then returned to MSFC and was Deputy Director for the Inertial Upper Stage joint program with the Air Force as well as the Operations Director for the Space Lab, a joint NASA and European Space Agency program. He culminated his NASA career at NASA Headquarters as Director of the Expendable Equipment Division, responsible for the Space Shuttle External Tank, Solid Rocket Booster, and all Shuttle propulsion stages flying out of the Shuttle cargo bay. He was a charter member of Senior Executive Service.
Frank earned an M.S. in Management from MIT as a NASA sponsored Sloan Fellow; a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering, and a B.S. in Management Engineering, both from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
About Schafer Corporation
Schafer Corporation is a provider of scientific, engineering, and technical services and products applied to defeating national security threats. The Company has a national footprint supporting mission-critical programs for customers including the US Air Force, US Army, US Navy, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), Missile Defense Agency (MDA), United States Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM), National Aeronautics & Space Administration (NASA), Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and National Security Agency (NSA). The Company has been widely recognized for its technical expertise and ability to provide objective analysis that leads to the development of innovative, problem-solving solutions. For more information, please visit
About Metalmark Capital
Metalmark Capital is a leading private equity firm whose principals have a long track record of successful investing in targeted sectors, with particular focus and competence in energy/natural resources, industrials, healthcare, and defense/government services. Metalmark Capital seeks to build long-term value through active and supportive partnerships with the companies and management teams in which it invests. Metalmark Capital, which is an investment center of Citi Capital Advisors, is currently investing its latest fund with $2.5 billion of committed capital. For more information, please visit