ONERA has the great regret to inform you of the passing away of its Chief Executive Officer, Denis Maugars, on 8 August 2013, aged 57.
He was appointed Chief Executive Officer of ONERA on 23 April 2003. He was undertaking his second mandate with the Council of Ministers.
Over the last decade spent leading ONERA, Denis Maugars showed full commitment to obtaining recognition for the quality of the works carried out by the research center. He constantly aimed to ensure ONERA played a key role in European research, particularly in the Defence sector. He also attempted to defend the interests of ONERA with industrial players in the field and the authorities. He strongly supported the opening-up policy he implemented, particularly targeting innovative SME.
Thanks to a strict management policy, he was able to apply a controlled and pertinent investment strategy and work to maintain ONERA infrastructures at peak international standards.
In international terms, he enabled ONERA to increase its cooperation with many companies and institutions, such as the NASA.
Denis Maugars was also Chairman of the Executive board of the Association des Instituts Carnot, member of the board of the French space agency, CNES, as well as ISAE, CERFACS, the Foundation for Scientific Cooperation (FSC) Paris – Saclay campus. He was also a member of the board of ACARE and the association of European Research Establishments in Aerospace (EREA).
After starting his career in 1982 with the DRIRE (Regional division of industry, research and the environment) Rhône Alpes, where he was in charge of industrial affairs, he joined the Ministry of Industry in 1984, and the Budgetary Directorate in 1986. He particularly organised the financing of Ariane 5, and monitored the human resources policy for scientific establishments.
In 1993, he became Deputy Director of the cabinet of François Fillon within the French Ministry of National Education and Research (MENRST). His remit was to optimise the resources accorded to scientific policy: civil research budget, industrial research, aerospace research.
In 1995, he entered the Aerospace segment as Director of Operations and Services. He was later appointed Director of geostationary satellites multimedia within Alcatel Space Industries in 1998.
As a passionate scientist and a fervent admirer of entrepreneurship, Denis Maugars graduated from Ecole Polytechnique (in 1975) and was a chief engineer from the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Mines.