Lockheed Martin’s maintenance and repair facility in southern Greenville County is undergoing a leadership change for the first time in two decades.
Mike Fox, former production operations director for the Maryland-based defense giant’s Integrated Fighter Group programs, has been named general manager and site director of the facility. He replaces Don Erickson, who retired in September.
“Mike brings experience from production and sustainment across Lockheed Martin’s aircraft portfolio,” Bruce Litchfield, vice president for sustainment operations at Lockheed, said in a news release. “He is stepping into a role at a time of incredible growth and opportunity.”
Fox joined Lockheed Martin in 2003 after serving 22 years in the U.S. Air Force.
His roles at Lockheed have included site lead and production operations director for the company’s U-2 Dragon Lady depot maintenance program based in Palmdale, California, quality and mission success director for the C-5 Galaxy program, C-130J Hercules assembly and flight operations director, as well as multiple leadership roles within the F-22 Raptor program, all in Marietta, Georgia, according to the release.
As the company’s new general manager and site director in Greenville, Fox oversees a nearly 500-person operation, which provides modification, maintenance, repair, and overhaul services for both military and civil aircraft from a 16-hangar campus at the South Carolina Technology and Aviation Center, or SCTAC.
Fox will also oversee the buildout of a production line for F-16 fighter aircraft later this year and the new jobs that will support the production, according to a news release.
Lockheed announced earlier this year that it has received a $1.12 billion contract from the United States government to produce 16 advanced F-16 Block 70 Fighting Falcons for the Royal Bahraini Air Force at its facility in southern Greenville County.
As the Upstate Business Journal reported earlier this year, the company is modifying an existing 110,000-square-foot hanger at SCTAC and hiring up to 200 people to support production, which is expected to begin later this year.
Litchfield said Erickson has been “instrumental in positioning the site and the state as a leader in the aerospace industry by building a great team and paving the way to bring production of the F-16 fighter jet to Greenville.”
“He has also been at the helm as the site competes for a $16 billion contract to produce the U.S. Air Force’s next pilot trainer aircraft,” Litchfield said in the release. “With the new F-16 production and a contract win to build the trainer jet, the site would add nearly 500 jobs over the coming years.”
Erickson, who joined Lockheed in 1997 as director of planning at the company’s facility in Greenville, was named general manager and site director in 2012.
In addition to his efforts at Lockheed, Erickson has been an active community member, serving on the Palmetto Conservation Foundation board of directors and championing causes like Habitat for Humanity, March of Dimes, and the Upstate Honor Flight.
He was recognized by former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley as the 2015 Economic Ambassador for Greenville County and by Greenville Business Magazine as one of Greenville’s Most Influential People in 2016 and 2017.
For more information, visit www.lockheedmartin.com.