Iris Technology Names Two New Executives; Unprecedented Growth at 25

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In its 25th year of operations, Iris Technology is experiencing an unprecedented demand for its military alternative power systems and space electronics programs – tripling gross revenues since 2007. To keep up with expansion, the company has hired Michael Haley to manage its high power GREEN and StarBase™ solar programs and Chief Administrative Officer Sandra Thomson to oversee human resources, information technology, and change management at Iris.

This is about the Marine or Soldier who will be able to return home. It is about keeping him or her safe by eliminating unneeded fuel resupply operations.

Iris Technology, an Irvine, CA, based defense contractor specializing in military power systems and space electronics, is celebrating its 25th year in operation and shows no sign of slowing down. Under the leadership of founder and CEO Edward O’Rourke, the company has been expanding.

Despite the economic trends that have hindered other small businesses, Iris’ gross revenues have tripled since 2007, and in 2011 the company expects to experience 50% revenue growth for the fourth consecutive year. Founded in 1986, Iris Technology is a premier integrator of reliable tactical power systems for the military. The company, which also supports commercial and strategic space operations with electronics and electro-optic system components, has delivered over 12,000 products to destinations worldwide.

With financial growth has come personnel expansion. Iris, which had 4 employees in 2007, now employs 25 people and anticipates continued hiring through 2011. Recent talent acquisitions at Iris include two new executives: Program Manager Michael Haley and Chief Administrative Officer Sandra Thomson.

Iris’ new Program Manager Michael Haley is a senior executive leader with over 20 years in progressive program management. Haley has managed programs in excess of $150 million dollars and expands Iris’ capacity to deliver large-scale government contracts on time and on budget. His experience covers US government and commercial space systems, defense systems payloads, and satellite design and manufacturing. He comes to Iris from Raytheon, where he was a senior program manager for seven years, and is a graduate of Arizona State University.

Haley will be responsible for Iris’ high power solar programs, both GREEN and StarBase™, which support base level operations. Additionally, he will be managing some of Iris’ advanced technology programs with the Air Force and Navy. The StarBase™ system is a 3 kW-class solution for Forward Operating Base (FOB) applications, smartly linking an array of rigid solar panels with available fielded generators and batteries to efficiently meet FOB power demands. According to Haley, “The military will utilize Iris’ StarBase™ solar technology to power bases in remote locations where transporting petroleum fuel is dangerous, difficult and costly. This is about the Marine or Soldier who will be able to return home. It is about keeping him or her safe by eliminating unneeded fuel resupply operations.”

Chief Administrative Officer Sandra Thomson oversees human resources, information technology, and change management at Iris. She has over 27 years of management experience working in the manufacturing, medical, and financial industries and has been a human resources executive for the past 10 years. An accomplished trainer, Thomson has given over 300 presentations across North America including teaching at Cal Poly, Pomona, and her alma mater, the University of Southern California (USC), where she earned both Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees.

When asked about the company’s rapid growth, Thomson observed: “On the military side, I would attribute the growth to Ed O’Rourke’s clear and prescient vision. He anticipates the needs of our customers, designing products that surpass initial specifications in their power, expandability and performance. The same is true on the aerospace side where our CTO Carl Kirkconnell is always on the cutting edge of research and development. I am delighted to be part of a team that consistently exceeds expectations.”

Iris Technology is currently ramping up production of their SPACES and StarBase™ solar power solutions for the US Marine Corps. Low rate initial production (LRIP) of the StarBase™ controller commences this month. For more information on Iris Technology, go to or contact Elisabeth Miller at (949) 975-8410.

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Elisabeth Miller
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