REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. -- The U.S. Army has selected a new senior executive for aviation engineering at the U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development, and Engineering Center.

Keith Darrow has been appointed as a member of the Senior Executive Service and will serve as the director for AMRDEC's Aviation Engineering Directorate effective May 13. Darrow currently serves as the acting director for AED.

"It is with extreme pleasure that I announce the permanent selection of Mr. Keith Darrow as the new Senior Executive Service Director for the Aviation Engineering Directorate," AMRDEC Director Dr. Juanita Harris wrote to the workforce. "Mr. Darrow was selected out of an extremely competitive pool. Overall, Mr. Darrow demonstrated that he is a well-rounded, career seasoned and experienced leader. He clearly has the strategic mindset to be a value-added, positive influencing leader for AMRDEC."

Darrow began his career with the Department of the Army in 1980. During his 38 years of government service, he has served in various leadership, management and staff positions. Darrow has earned a reputation as a master Army aviator accumulating over 3,500 flight hours in a variety of aircraft and holding certifications as a flight instructor.

"I am grateful for this opportunity to provide executive level leadership to the extraordinary team at AED as we faithfully serve the Army aviation materiel enterprise and aviation Soldiers deployed around the world," said Darrow.

"Mr. Darrow understands the focused issues facing Army aviation and will lead to ensure AED meets the chief's priorities," Harris said. "With his vast and diverse experience within the aviation development domain and his demonstrated experience as a solid technologist leader, Keith is one who understands the technical engineering details of the business while at the same time is a clearly demonstrated people-focused leader."

Darrow holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the U.S. Military Academy, a Master of Science degree in Aerospace Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology, a Master of Arts degree in National Security and Strategic Studies from the U.S. Naval War College and a Master of Business Administration from Auburn University.

He is also a graduate of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College and the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School. Darrow is a member of the U.S. Army Acquisition Corps and holds Level 3 certifications in both Test & Evaluation and Systems Planning, Research, Development and Engineering.

An official SES ceremony will be held for Darrow at a later date.

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U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development and Engineering Center is part of the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, which has the mission to provide innovative research, development and engineering to produce capabilities that provide decisive overmatch to the Army against the complexities of the current and future operating environments in support of the joint warfighter and the nation. RDECOM is a major subordinate command of the U.S. Army Materiel Command.