Dr. Diane Howard is Chief Counsel for Space Commerce at the U.S. Department of Commerce. In addition to providing space law expertise to the Office of Space Commerce (OSC) and the Department of Commerce as a whole, she also participates in interagency work and is actively involved in the Office of Space Commerce’s implementation of Space Policy Directive-3.
In addition, Diane is a non-resident scholar at UT Austin’s Strauss Center for International and Security Studies and an adjunct professor in its School of Law. She is helping to develop Strauss Center’s Space Security and Safety program, a trans-disciplinary program offering opportunities to work on solutions to challenges to the space environment through a combination of law, policy, engineering, and science curricula. Prior to joining UT Austin, Dr. Howard was one of the original architects of a similar multi-disciplinary program at the undergraduate level in Daytona Beach, FL at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.
Diane first became involved in space endeavors in 2004, on both the domestic and international levels. She was a citizen advocate for the passing of the Commercial Space Law Amendments Act of 2004, a critical piece of U.S. legislation that made possible the development of innovative technologies and a burgeoning commercial space transportation industry and participated in United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space capacity building initiatives in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and Kiev, Ukraine. After working as a staff attorney in the Florida Appellate courts for some years, she took the decision to specialize in space law and attended McGill University’s Institute of Air and Space Law. Her LLM thesis centered upon private space law issues and her doctoral work focused upon effective spaceport regulation.
Diane is on the Council of The Off-World Approach.