Brigadier General Mark Baird (USAF Ret.) worked for the Department of Defense’s Space Force Planning Task Force as deputy director from December 2018 until August 31, 2019. In that role, Baird was responsible “in leading the Secretary of the Air Force chartered Task Force of subject matter experts in conducting the detailed planning activities associated with the standup of the United States Space Force, working across the Air Force, other military branch services, the Joint Staff and the Office of the Secretary of Defense.” In addition, he also worked as the deputy director of the National Reconnaissance Office where he “[assisted] the director and principal director in managing strategic and tactical operations.”
Less than a month after leaving the Pentagon, Baird joined Lockheed Martin as principal director of strategic integration, according to his LinkedIn profile. Lockheed Martin provides research, design, and manufacture capabilities for several defense agencies, including the U.S. Space Force. In January 2021, Lockheed won a $4.9 billion contract to provide the Space Force with three geosynchronous satellites which can detect the launch of ballistic or tactical missiles. This award came after the Space and Missile Systems Center awarded Lockheed $2.9 billion in 2018 for the design of the satellites, bringing the total to $7.8 billion.