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Axient grows its corporate leadership suite

HUNTSVILLE – March has seen a leadership boom for Axient Corp., a defense, aerospace and cyberspace contractor based in Huntsville. The company’s CEO Randy Cash promoted several company executives to growing corporate leadership roles, the company said.

Former Vice President of Corporate Development Patience Samson has been moved up to chief corporate affairs officer and senior vice president; former Senior Vice President of Growth Strategies Jay Kovacs, will now serve as Axient’s chief innovation officer; and Porf Dubón, formerly vice president of Strategies and Analysis, will become chief strategy officer.

The company also promoted former Controller Faye Hernandez to vice president of accounting and Air Force veteran and licensed mechanical engineer Rusty Powell to vice president of Engineering.

  • Samson brings to her new role, two decades of experience in the defense, intelligence, and civilian markets in the areas of program management, business development, marketing and corporate operations. Based out of North Alabama serving Huntsville, Decatur and Albertville, Samson will have oversight of government relations and public affairs, corporate communications, community relations, merger and acquisition integration, change management and stakeholder engagement. She will navigate and balance the internal and external needs of the business and build relationships to market and advocate for Axient capabilities, contracts, employees, and business interests.
  • As chief innovation officer, Kovacs is overseeing Axient’s innovation and growth strategy, and the technical capability expansion efforts in data analytics and digital engineering. With more than 35 years of experience, Kovacs led technical solutioning and strategy development initiatives and worked with Chief Growth Officer Dan Deans. He has held technical leadership positions at KBR, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and General Electric. Kovacs leads innovations and solutioning for strategic technical capabilities across Axient, including the company’s digital engineering and data analytics practices.
  • As the new chief strategy officer, Dubón is responsible for providing a corporate level focus on all aspects of strategy. He will support the CEO and collaborate with the executive team to execute key corporate initiatives to enable growth throughout the organization. Dubón has 38 years of comprehensive hands-on experience in operations, management, training, education, decision-making, strategic planning, directing, evaluating, motivating and quality improvement, including 20 years in the Air Force. He has provided executive level technical and programmatic support for multiple Department of the Defense programs, and has overseen the integration of risk, reliability, safety, quality, engineering, and software assurance specialties into the system engineering lifecycles of space and missile systems development and testing, launch support and launch vehicle system development activities.
  • As the new VP of Accounting, Hernandez is responsible for mentoring, directing, planning, and coordinating all accounting operational functions. During her eight years at Axient, Hernandez has been responsible for all aspects of accounting, auditing, tax reporting, compliance, and consolidations reporting. A certified public accountant in Virginia and California, she was also the controller at a start-up tech company and was a Grant Accountant at a non-profit organization. She will work out of the Virginia office where she is a member of the Virginia Society of CPAs.
  • Powell will develop and oversee systems engineering and integration processes, support the development of Axient strategic capabilities, develop and lead internal research and development policy and direction, and conduct and support technical reviews and audits in support of operational segments and functional teams’ activities. Powell has over 30 years of experience in aircraft sustainment/maintenance, program management, research and development, academic, and acquisitions, including more than 23 years in the Air Force. Working out of the Colorado office, Powell is an American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics Associate Fellow. He has authored multiple peer-reviewed articles in various publications and conferences on the topics of hypersonics, combustion, launch and range, and engineering education.

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