To the attention of IAF Members,


In accordance with the IAF Constitution, the selection of Elective Officers required to lead the International Astronautical Federation (IAF) and serve on the IAF Bureau takes place annually. These volunteer officers are elected by the IAF General Assembly, in accordance with procedures established in the IAF Constitution and By-Laws.

IAF Officers are elected to serve for one, three-year, non-consecutive term. In addition, an Elective Officer is entitled to serve the Federation for another non-consecutive period of office, with a maximum of two terms in the same office. All elected Officer positions are honorary, and officers serve without any remuneration.

For the 2020 Elective Officers selection the following 4 officers positions are now open for election by the General Assembly in October 2020 in conjunction with the during the 71st International Astronautical Congress – The CyberSpace Edition:

  • 4 Vice Presidents to serve the Federation from October 2020 for a three-year period

A list of the current IAF Officers and the period of their service is available on the right column.

In recent years, interest in serving as volunteer Officers of the IAF has grown significantly.  With this in mind, and in order to ensure that the Federation evaluates candidates in a fair and transparent fashion, the procedure for officers’ elections has been laid down in the IAF Constitution and Bylaws. Given the virtual nature of this year’s General Assembly, and in the interest of providing maximum transparency to IAF member organizations, the following rules and procedures will be applied:

  • Nominations of individuals to serve as Officers of the Federation shall be submitted by an IAF Member Organization in good standing. The nominee shall be a representative of the organization submitting the nomination, and shall confirm acceptance of his/her nomination.
  • Nominees may only be recommended for one open position.
  • The nomination package shall include:
      • Nomination letter submitted by an IAF Member organization in good standing, including any background documentation on the qualifications of the proposed officer, and on his/her past experience as an IAF volunteer;
      • CV/Biography of the nominee;
      • One-page motivation letter from the nominee;
      • A one-minute video from the nominee presenting her/himself and outlining her/his motivation to serve on the Bureau of the Federation.
  • The complete nomination package should be received by the IAF Executive Director on or before 7 August 2020.
  • The IAF Secretariat will maintain a list of those individuals nominated that will be made available on the restricted area of the IAF web site at the IAF Members’ page (name, nominating organization, country).

In addition, after the deadline, all nomination packages will be available (including one-minute videos) on the restricted area

  • According to the IAF Constitution, article 12.1, the General Assembly on a proposal by the Bureau shall appoint a five-persons Nomination Committee, which will review the nomination packages, interview the nominees and take input from IAF member organizations and volunteers and shall be responsible for the elaboration of a recommendation to the IAF Bureau and General Assembly concerning the election of Officers.

On 11 September 2020, the IAF General Assembly members will receive, via email, the Bureau recommendation on the list of Nomination Committee member candidates, inclusive of their bios for approval through electronic voting by 25 September 2020

  • On 9 October 2020 the IAF General Assembly members will receive, via email, the Nomination Committee and IAF Bureau recommendations on those nominees who shall serve as Officers of the Federation for the period applicable for approval through electronic voting by 13 October 2020, 15:00 Paris Time.
  • At its live-streamed plenary session, the IAF General Assembly will be informed about the results of the voting and the elected IAF Officers.

Most officers of the Federation have had experience in serving on IAF technical and/or administrative committees. Some have also served in leadership roles within the Federation. The Nomination Committee and the General Assembly will take this experience into account in evaluating prospective candidates.

In addition to the nominees’ qualifications, the Nomination Committee and General Assembly will give due regard to nominees from nations or international organizations that have reached a high degree of development in space activities. In line with the Federation’s focus on “3G” Diversity (Gender – Geography – Generation) the Nomination Committee and General Assembly will also consider the importance of an equitable “3G” distribution within the IAF Bureau.

Member Organizations of the Federation are kindly requested to submit via email nomination packages, as described above, of individuals to serve as Officers of the International Astronautical Federation for the applicable period no later than 7 August 2020 to:


Christian Feichtinger

Executive Director

International Astronautical Federation

Email:  christian.feichtinger@iafastro.org




Pascale Ehrenfreund – Austria – (2019 – 2022)

German Aerospace Center (DLR)




Mohammed Nasser Al Ahbabi – United Arab Emirates – (2018 – 2021)
United Arab Emirates Space Agency (UAE SA)
Gabriella Arrigo – Italy – (2017 – 2020)
Italian Space Agency (ASI)
Bruce Chesley – United States – (2018 – 2021)
The Boeing Company
Seishiro Kibe – Japan – (2017 – 2020)
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA)
Valanathan Munsami – South Africa – (2017 – 2020)
South African National Space Agency (SANSA)
Deganit Paikowsky – Israel – (2019 – 2022)
Tel Aviv University
Minoo Rathnasabapathy – USA – (2018 – 2021)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
Sergey Saveliev – Russian Federation – (2019 – 2022)
State Space Corporation “Roscosmos”
Mary Snitch – United States – (2019 – 2022)
Lockheed Martin
S. Somanath – India – (2018 – 2021)
Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)
Dominique Tilmans – Belgium – (2019 – 2022)
Baohua Yang – China – (2017 – 2020)
Chinese Society of Astronautics (CSA)

(*) Term ending in October 2020