John Tylko

Chief Innovation Officer,

Aurora Flight Sciences

John Tylko serves as Aurora’s Chief Innovation Officer, responsible for leading technology strategy and commercialization efforts. He oversaw Aurora’s major new program and customer acquisition efforts, enabling Aurora’s rapid growth which led to its acquisition by Boeing in 2017. He also developed the vision for Boeing’s Aerospace and Autonomy Center.

His career has been focused on the development of innovative technologies and products, spanning both the aerospace and the electronics and computer industry. He received a Bachelor of Science in Aeronautics and Astronautics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1979 and began his engineering career at General Electric where he developed the first composite structural assemblies for aircraft engines. Tylko cofounded General Computer in 1981, which developed innovative electronics and personal computer products. He also cofounded VideoGuide, which developed the first interactive television program guide.

Tylko helped start Aurora Flight Sciences with John Langford in 1989 and was a member of Aurora’s Board of Directors for nearly thirty years from 1989 to 2017. He led Aurora’s Global Hawk program, built its state of-the-art composite structures manufacturing center, and established Aurora’s aerostructures business sector. Tylko founded Aurora’s Research and Development Center in Cambridge in 2005 and was the principle architect of Aurora’s strategy for aerospace autonomy.

He has been a lecturer in MIT’s Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics and is a recipient of MIT’s Founders Award which recognizes innovation and entrepreneurship. Tylko was a Guggenheim Fellow at the National Air and Space Museum and is an Associate Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. He is a Ph.D. candidate at MIT researching flight simulation technology.