Jobs at Alumni Ventures Portfolio Companies


Chief Engineer

Phase Four

Phase Four

Other Engineering
Hawthorne, NJ, USA
Posted on Friday, April 5, 2024

Phase Four is developing the next generation of in-space propulsion for the rapidly expanding space economy. From large constellations in low earth orbit to new missions and cutting-edge capabilities, our team is the key to mission success. We are an innovative team that’s focused, passionate, and excited about space.

Join us at Phase Four as we design, build and deliver the next generation of in-space propulsion and change the way humanity moves in space.

Job Summary:

As the Chief Engineer at Phase Four, you will be the cornerstone of the Engineering department as a whole. Reporting directly to the Chief Technology Officer, your role will include being the helm of the Company’s Engineering team, in terms of management and mentorship that is critical to the Company’s success. This role cross-functionally touches all levels of the organization, as well as oversees the ideation and delegation of multiple projects.

Core Responsibilities:

  • Direct Engineering team as a whole from concept inception strategy, through requirements, product development, design, testing, certification, product delivery, and post-delivery support while considering costs and timelines throughout the process.
  • Oversee the Engineering Team while providing technical direction, mentorship, and performance management from strategy to post-delivery. Oversee scalability of Team in a way that supports a rapidly scaling business operation.
  • Responsible for leading product design efforts, testing processes, configurations, and delivery of operations relating, but not limited to, PPU, PMU, structures and GSE.
  • Responsible for defining the development program for next generation subsystems (electronic, fluidic and other) and incorporating them into next generation products.
  • Responsible for leading engineering REs and understanding systems of the overall propulsion system and ultimately, the Company’s ability to achieve its goals.
  • Assess and mitigate technical risks and compliance across all programs and projects; Work closely with cross-functional teams to ensure systems work synonymously, identifying and resolving potential risk issues.
  • Assist heavily with the development and growth of the Engineering Team, identifying recruiting needs as well as performance management for the team in place. Make recommendations on the continued structure of the Engineering Team as the Company scales.
  • Establish a culture of proactivity for risk management and issue resolution, providing assistance and mentorship regarding steps toward resolution and open and honest dialogue on technical issues as they may arise.
  • Collaborate with the Chief Technology Officer to bridge the gap between the Engineering Team on a day-to-day function and upcoming programs and projects.
  • Collaborate with CEO; CTO; Directors of Finance and Business Operations; and President of Government Affairs as needed to assist with strategic initiatives and project bids.
  • Collaborate with the leadership team in defining and scoping technology needs as they relate to the industry, and/or projects applicable to the Company.
  • Develop and maintain relationships and partnerships with customers, stakeholders, peers, and partnering organizations for on-going and new business product development
  • When necessary, interface with regulatory bodies and certification authorities to secure necessary approvals.
  • Perform other duties as required

Minimum Qualifications / Skills:

  • Bachelor's degree in an Engineering field required. Advanced degree (Master's or Ph.D.) is preferred.
  • At least 10 years of experience in the Aerospace industry, the majority of which have been in management level positions.
  • Previous experience with ERP systems, implementation experience ideal.
  • Strong leadership skills, previous experience managing employees at all levels of an organization. Comfortable and excited by the balance between ‘out-and-up’ and ‘down-and-in’ leadership.
  • Ability to communicate with internal and external stakeholders.
  • Ability to be on-site at our facility located in Hawthorne, CA full time.

Preferred Qualifications / Skills:

  • At least 6 years of experience in a Chief Engineer or Director Level role.
  • Previous experience with Federal Government Sales and/or Systems.
  • Previous experience with setup of AS9100.
  • Previous experience with both standing up as well as using ERP systems.

Salary Range:

  • $190,000.00-$210,000.00 Annually, DOE


  • Competitive salary and equity commensurate with the Los Angeles Aerospace industry.
  • Comprehensive health benefits (Medical, Dental, and Vision) with company contributions for both employees and dependents.
  • 401k with company matching incentive, eligible after your first 90 days of employment.
  • ~10 paid holidays annually.
  • Robust PTO and sick accrual policy.


  • To conform to U.S. Government space technology export regulations, applicant must be a U.S. citizen, lawful permanent resident of the U.S., protected individual as defined by 8 U.S.C. 1324b(a)(3), or eligible to obtain the required authorizations from the U.S. Department of State.
  • We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, protected veteran status, or disability status.