January 22, 2021

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Daniel M. Tellep, Engineer Who Steered Lockheed’s Growth, Dies at 89

Daniel M. Tellep, Engineer Who Steered Lockheed’s Growth, Dies at 89


Daniel M. Tellep, an aerospace engineer who initiated a merger involving Lockheed and Martin Marietta to type the world’s major armed service contractor, then became its 1st main executive, died on Nov. 26 at his household in Saratoga, Calif. He was 89.

His dying was confirmed by his daughter Susan Tellep.

Mr. Tellep was at Lockheed’s helm as the Chilly War was ending. Lockheed, centered in Calabasas, was struggling and looking at possibly diminished need with the leisure of world wide tensions, as was Martin Marietta, led at the time by Norman R. Augustine. The merger, in 1995, developed a protection marketplace behemoth. In 2019, Lockheed Martin net gross sales had been $59.8 billion.

“The ‘merger of equals’” that he orchestrated between Lockheed and Martin “led to improvements and capabilities that continue on to shield our country, our allies, and our highest ideals,” Marillyn Hewson, Lockheed Martin’s government chairwoman, reported in a statement after Mr. Tellep’s death.

As a main govt at Lockheed and then at Lockheed Martin, Mr. Tellep oversaw enhancement of military services communications satellites, photographic intelligence satellites, the Hubble Place Telescope and extra.

As an engineer at Lockheed, he was a pioneer of area and missile know-how systems. He was the principal scientist on the country’s initial re-entry flight experiments, executed to ascertain how a nuclear missile could best go by way of the atmosphere, into room and then back again into the atmosphere with no getting ruined. He also worked on submarine-launched ballistic missile programs and on creating thermal tiles to defend area shuttles.

“He experienced a whole lot of know-how of how to retain things from burning up, mainly,” his longtime colleague David Klinger reported in a phone job interview. “He was really superior at the mathematics as effectively as the realistic facet to essentially make things work. And he was so great that the enterprise place him in demand of more and much more persons.”

Daniel Tellep was born on Nov. 20, 1931, in Forest City, Pa., about 25 miles northeast of Scranton, to John and Mary Tellep. His father labored as a coal processor and then as a carpenter. His mother, who experienced immigrated from Jap Europe as a kid, labored for a thread company. The family members later moved to San Diego, where his father worked as a machinist and where by Daniel grew up.

Daniel was obsessed with flight from a younger age, when he commenced building a lifelong passion for product airplanes in a memoir he wrote for his spouse and children, he recalled making his to start with:

“No question the finished model was crude, but there it was, three-dimensional, recognizable as a person of the popular airplanes of the era, and I could maintain it out on my arm and transfer it as if it was in flight. I bear in mind on the lookout at it for hrs.”

He studied mechanical engineering at the College of California, Berkeley, graduating summa cum laude in 1954 and earning a master’s degree in 1955. He joined Lockheed that calendar year. He was the principal scientist on the X-17, just one of the earliest investigation rockets.

Mr. Tellep’s function in re-entry technological innovation and thermodynamics won him, at 32, the Lawrence B. Sperry Award from the American Institute for Aeronautics and Astronautics. He was later elected to the Nationwide Academy of Engineering.

Mounting through Lockheed’s ranks, Mr. Tellep was named president in 1984 and chairman and main executive in 1989. The company experienced been struggling, and he served turn it all around. He was in demand when it received a huge contract to build the F-22, the latest generation of Air Drive fighter planes at the time. The contract translated to $70 billion in profits for the corporation and its associates and solidified Lockheed’s company rebound.

His management was noticed.

“Throughout Lockheed’s travails in excess of the previous many decades, Mr. Tellep has preserved his attribute outward quiet and affability,” The New York Periods wrote of him in 1991, “though he proved himself to be as difficult as the most ruthless corporate raider.”

Mr. Tellep became Lockheed Martin’s 1st chairman and main government in 1995, serving as C.E.O. for nine months and remaining as chairman until 1998.

He fulfilled Margaret Lewis, in faculty and married her in 1954. The couple experienced four girls and later on divorced. He satisfied and married Patricia Baumgartner, a psychotherapist, in 1970. They remained jointly right until her loss of life in 2005.

In addition to his daughter Susan, he is survived by his three other daughters, Teresa and Mary Tellep and Patricia Axelrod his initially spouse, with whom he remained shut two stepdaughters from his 2nd relationship, Chris Chatwell and Anne Bossange 7 grandchildren and 5 terrific-grandchildren.

Mr. Tellep’s passion for flight extended into his adult decades, when he would get to the sky in engineless gliders, a pursuit demanding deep information of wind and thermodynamics. He flew radio-managed airplanes into his early 80s. And the design planes he built as a boy, such as a treasured a single he misplaced, remained in his memories.

“On a incredibly hot summer time working day, I introduced the glider,” he wrote in his spouse and children memoir, “and it appeared to circle endlessly, barely descending. This was when I uncovered about ‘thermals.’ This rising column of air carries with it all things light-weight — and this incorporated my glider. Due to the fact I didn’t set my identify on it, there was no way it could be returned. Now, so numerous decades later on, it is with me in a various way.”



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