Dr. Michael Heil, Colonel, USAF, Retired
PhD Aerospace Engineering, 1986
Like many graduates of AFIT, Michael Heil has decided to become a leader in the ever changing and competitive aerospace development field. However, he is unlike most other graduates because he had the opportunity to serve as the Commandant of AFIT from 2001 to 2003. Being able to give back to the school that has given him so much has been one of Dr. Heil’s greatest experiences.
Dr. Heil currently serves as the President and CEO of Ohio Aerospace Institute (OAI), a non-profit research facility that helps universities, aerospace companies, and federal laboratories reach their research and development goals. In 2010, Dr. Heil was a Named Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. He attributes much of his success in the aerospace industry to the research he took part in while studying at AFIT.
While Dr. Heil helps the community through his corporate endeavors, he also enjoys giving back to the youth of the community. He regularly volunteers as a judge for the First Robotics Organization which promotes science and engineering among young students.
Dr. Heil feels privileged to have been a part of AFIT for much of his career and still emphasizes the importance of knowledge and unique ideas to the progression of the Air Force. Dr. Heil currently lives with his wife, Donna, and his son, Ryan, in Ohio.