|Residence||Reno, NV, U.S.|
|Alma mater||University of Nevada, Reno (MS)|
|Known for||Owner and CEO of Sierra Nevada Corporation, Dream Chaser mini space shuttle|
Fatih Ozmen is the owner and CEO of Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC). Best known publicly for the Dream Chaser spacecraft selected by NASA to move cargo to and from the International Space Station, Fast Company business magazine, in its April 2014 "5 minute read" section, named SNC to be one of the world's top 10 most innovative companies in space. Fatih Ozmen and his wife, Eren Ozmen, are the sole owners of SNC.
Early life and education
Born in Turkey, the former Turkish National Cycling Champion rode alongside top Turkish cyclists throughout the 1970s including the 1977 Tour de L'avenir in France. Fatih Ozmen pursued higher education in the United States receiving a M.S. Degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Nevada, Reno. He went on to obtain a master's, with a thesis on navigation and landing systems.
He started at Sierra Nevada Corporation as an engineering intern in 1981; during his early years at the company, he helped develop numerous systems and managed several key programs. In 1994, Fatih Ozmen and his wife Eren Ozmen acquired Sierra Nevada Corporation. Since then, SNC has completed 19 strategic acquisitions, expanded the company to 34 locations in 19 U.S. states, England, Germany and Turkey, and has grown to include workforce of over 3,000 personnel. The company is ranked one of the top performing Federal Contractors in the United States.
In 2017, Fatih and Eren Ozmen launched Ozmen Ventures, a seed and early-stage venture capital fund headquartered in Reno. The $5 million fund aims to invest in young and dynamic local startups and cultivate the local entrepreneurial ecosystem.
In 2014, Fatih and wife Eren made the largest gift in college history to the University of Nevada, Reno’s College of Business for the creation of a permanent center to support entrepreneurial programs in areas such as science, engineering and journalism. The Ozmen Center for Entrepreneurship supports and enhances the university's entrepreneurial programs in order to stimulate the creation of new business ventures.
In late 2016, in honor of Fatih’s 35th anniversary, SNC announced an investment of $1.5 million in a planned aerospace gallery at Wings Over the Rockies’ expansion site at Centennial Airport. The new Exploration of Flight center will feature a new wing to be called the Ozmen Black Sky Space Gallery and aims to develop future aviators and aerospace professionals through growing educational outreach initiatives and a future aerospace charter school. Actor/pilot Harrison Ford made the surprise announcement to more than 1,000 SNC employees and guests at SNC’s year-end event in Denver.
Awards and recognition
- Aviation Entrepreneurs of the Year
- Living Legends of Aviation
- "Ellis Island Medal of Honor"
- Top 10 Most Influential Turkish Americans, TurkOfAmerica
- Honorary Doctorate of Science – University of Nevada, Reno (2016)
- On May 13, 2016, Fatih Ozmen delivered the keynote speech at the University of Nevada, Reno commencement ceremony.
- World's Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in Space, Fast Company Magazine
- America's Fastest-Growing Private Companies, Inc. Magazine
- Tier 1 Superior Supplier for U.S. Air Force
- Aerospace Company of the Year
- Distinguished Business of the Year
- Best Places to Work: Reno-Tahoe, Denver, Florida
- Schultz, Jim. "Setting the Spaceplane Stage". NASA. Retrieved 23 August 2017.
- Sofge, Erik. "The World's Top 10 Most Innovative Companies In Space". Fast Company. Retrieved 1 April 2014.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-07-14. Retrieved 2014-06-30.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-06-25. Retrieved 2014-07-01.
- Alumni pledge $5 million to UNR entrepreneurship center, by Reno Gazette-Journal, posted Wednesday, Sept 10, 2014
- "2014 NCET / RGJ Award Winners - NCET: Business. Technology. Events". NCET. Retrieved 2015-06-18.
- "2016/14 Annual Honorees". Living Legends of Aviation.
- "Sierra Nevada Corporation Owners Named in Top 10 Most Influential Turkish-Americans by TurkOfAmerica Magazine". Prweb.com. Retrieved 2015-06-18.
- Honorary Degree Nomination - Eren and Fatih Ozmen
- Fatih Ozmen University of Nevada, Reno Spring Commencement 2016 Address
- "The World's Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in Space". Retrieved June 8, 2016.
- Air Force Army Names Superior Suppliers