Kelly Larson has climbed mountains. Literally and figuratively.
(Check out her TED talk https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=49CaCeC4C_Y)!
As the CEO of Aquarian Space, there’s always challenges to be overcome, just like the challenges we must overcome within our universe. Major space weather events. Solar flares, coronal mass ejections. Don’t worry, Kelly’s working on it.
Beth and Kelly share a casual conversation that answers:
- What’s more difficult? Being a CEO to a space start-up, or completing a Ph.D.?
- What motivates Kelly to climb mountains when it can be SO DIFFICULT?
- A LOT of our asteroid detection is done by volunteers. This global threat has some great people working on this and they’re doing a great job. Is it enough?
- Which leadership traits can be implemented from years of yoga practice and instruction?
“This industry is a key essential about life… our capacity to be in touch with the wonder and the awe that space reminds us of. To be in touch with that, I believe, makes us better humans.”-Kelly Larson from Casual Space Podcast
About Kelly Larson: CEO of Aquarian Space, TEDx speaker and a serial entrepreneur, Kelly Larson, ABD, is an innovator at the intersection of business, science and leadership. As a farm girl grown into a Yoga and transformation entrepreneur turned space CEO, she trail-blazes new business ventures and connects people and ideas across the globe. Kelly is widely known for her innovative approaches to business and her strategic range. She currently specializes in aerospace market-ready development strategies with an emphasis in collaborative international partnerships and high-level entrepreneurial ventures. Kelly sees that we can only develop a strong interplanetary economy together.
“We’re going to network the solar system so that people going to Jupiter, anybody that wants to go out into space can send a signal back to Earth- we’re offering a higher data capacity option.”
About Aquarian Space: https://aquariandevices.com/
Aquarian Space (formerly Devices) is the world’s first commercial Space Based Interplanetary Communications Provider.
Their Space Based Relay Network allows customers to send and receive high volumes of uninterrupted streaming data quickly and reliably, 24/7.
Aquarian Devices is building the foundational infrastructure for a fully networked Solar System that will relieve a major bottleneck in lunar and deep space communications and open the door for humanity’s expansion into the next frontier.
PS- Aquarian Devices is currently looking for a CTO, and a COO! More details at the end of the show notes.
BONUS SHOW NOTES & QUOTES:
On being a female CEO: “During today’s space conference, I’ve been noticing on the panels where both male and female CEO’s are presenting, the females are asked about risk, and the males are asked about their upsides.” I feel like I’m paddling upstream sometimes. I prefer to be kind, and a relational-based person. That means that (at times) people tend to often underestimate me. I have advantages: I can relate with people really well. I have a fresh energy.
What I see in my future is an adventure. To me, being a woman and being a leader is not just about breaking stereotypes, it’s also about bringing the gifts that are innate. I have different hormones in my body and I’m wired differently, so I feel delighted in trailblazing as one of many women that’s about femininity that’s really powerful in leadership.”
About Being a CEO: “I’ve done start-ups before. The bootstrapping. It’s hard. I mean, it’s really hard. Raising capital is a whole other level with the team. Doing a start up with one of the more audacious technologies, and one of the most ‘out there’ industries, it was so hard. It was so challenging. I just listened to my gut and I just knew that this was going to be a long-term thing for me. I got through the first layer of fire, and now it’s really fun.”
“I never questioned that I was supposed to be doing this. When I’m committed, I’m committed. What kept me climbing mountains and walking through fires (as a CEO)? The answer today, is that it’s FUN. I’m not just getting to create a really cool company in an incredible industry, but a company that’s going to make a major impact on the space industry AND, one of the technologies our company makes possible are space weather and asteroid detection, which are two of the biggest threats to human kind. I get to literally and very functionally contribute to the preservation of our species!”
“I get to speak about space, and get people re-connected to space and the beauty & magnificence of it. It feels like a privilege and an honor. It is so hard and it’s great.”
About Solving the Problems of Space Threats: “NeoCam Near-Earth Object Camera is coming, and it will help, but it doesn’t help cover all of the problems. So what we can do at Aquarian Devices is the first high-data rate deep space communication, to help with space weather and asteroid detection. Through 360 degree cameras and AI, we are able to get the data so that the brilliant scientists on Earth can predict and track the threats.”
On the Space Exploration Industry from Kelly’s Unique Perspective: “Space right now is in this profound moment of growth and change. It is THE time that start-ups are starting to thrive and take off. Everything is changing right now.”
Aquarian Devices: Chief Technology Officer (CTO)
Salary Upon Funding • Co-Founder equity position to vest with milestones
Aquarian Space is an interplanetary communications start-up company offering 24/7 high data rate, high speed delivery relay satellites between the Moon, Mars and Earth. The targeted customer markets are international space agencies, international defense agencies and commercial space explorers.
Aquarian Space is a growing startup seeking a full-time executive to develop and execute key technology plans. We have strong innovative designs and customer interest, solid partnerships forming and dedicated cofounders to build with. Initially, the compensation will be equity-only. However, with the execution of near-term plans to acquire both revenue and funding in the next quarter, a salary will be immediately introduced.
The Chief Technology Officer (CTO) is responsible for overseeing all technical aspects of the company. The CTO works closely with the CEO and executive management and reports to the CEO. Using an active and practical approach, the CTO will direct all employees in Engineering Department to attain the company’s established strategic goals. The company is young, so incoming CTO will also help define the position itself.
To ensure success you should have a clear understanding of our company’s core values and culture. Top candidates will be experienced in the aerospace start up industry, exemplary leaders, have superb technical and business acumen and have sound understanding of lunar and deep space communications.
Trust, integrity, creativity, problem solving, collaboration, co-creation, service, respect, honor, playfulness, freedom to do it differently, simplicity and boundaries.
- Works with CEO and Chief Inventor to establish the company’s technical vision and leads all aspects of the company’s technological development.
- Directs the company’s technical strategic direction, development and future growth.
- Works in a consultative fashion with other department heads, such as sales and operations, in service of collaborative support.
- Provide leadership in a fashion that supports the company’s culture, mission and values.
- Coordinates with Chief Inventor on research and case studies on leading edge technologies and makes determinations on the probability of implementation.
- Acts as a good steward of Aquarian Space by co-creating an economically efficient, culturally inspiring company that produces robust technology with integrity.
Chief Operating Officer (COO)
Co-Founder equity position Aquarian Space is an interplanetary communications start-up company offering 24/7 high data rate, high speed delivery relay satellites between the Moon, Mars and Earth. The targeted customer markets are international space agencies, international defense agencies and commercial space explorers. Aquarian Space is a growing startup seeking a full-time executive to develop and execute key technology plans. We have strong innovative designs and customer interest, solid partnerships forming and dedicated cofounders to build with. Initially, the compensation will be equity-only. However, with the execution of nearterm plans to acquire both revenue and funding in the next quarter, a salary will be immediately introduced. We are looking for a seasoned COO to create and refine our company’s operational processes. The COO will assist in compiling the company’s budget and employ strategies to safeguard assets, compile financial reports, and control financial policies and procedures until the CFO comes on board. The COO will team up with management to implement business strategies. The company is young, so incoming COO will also help define the position itself. To ensure success you should have a clear understanding of our company’s core values and culture. Top candidates will be experienced in the start up aerospace industry, exemplary leaders, have superb business acumen and have sound understanding of tech industry business strategies. CORE VALUES: Trust, integrity, creativity, problem solving, collaboration, co-creation, service, respect, honor, playfulness, freedom to do it differently, simplicity and boundaries.
COO RESPONSIBILITIES: • Assist the CEO to scale business and grow through Seed & Series A rounds. • Work with executive team to build company culture. • Work together with key participants to refine operations budget. • Spearheading strategies to steer the company’s future in a positive direction. • Driving the company’s operating capabilities to surpass customer satisfaction and retention, and company goals. • Implement better business practices. • Delegate responsibilities to ensure staff members grow as capable participants. • Employ various initiatives to coach employees to optimize their capabilities.