Brigadier Hilary Biwott Kipkosgey Appointed as KSA’s New Director

Director of the Kenyan Space Agency, Brigadier Hillary Biwott Kipkosgey

President Uhuru Kenyatta has promoted the former Acting Director-General of the Kenyan Space Agency (KSA), Colonel Hilary Biwott Kipkosgey to Brigadier and appointed him as the new Director of the agency.

This announcement was made by President Uhuru Kenyatta on Wednesday, July 20, 2022, when he made 16 new changes to the Kenya Defence Forces (KDF), on the advice of the Kenyan Defence Council chaired by Eugene Wamalwa, Cabinet Secretary for Defence. The 16 new appointments were to take effect immediately.  

In June 2021, Brigadier Kipkosgey was appointed as the Acting Director-General of the Kenyan Space Agency, succeeding the former Acting Director-General of the agency, Major General (Rtd) Thomas Chepkuto. During his tenure as the acting DG of the KSA, Brigadier Hilary has been upholding the agency’s mandate, focusing on promoting, coordinating and regulating space-related activities in Kenya. 

Under his leadership, KSA has been involved in several important activities, including:

  • KSA hosted the inaugural Kenya Space Expo & Conference 2022, from 15 –17 June 2022. The conference featured keynote speeches, interactive sessions, panel discussions, B2B matchmaking, B2C matchmaking and unique networking opportunities
  • Alongside national space agencies of Egypt and Uganda, KSA was selected as the first awardee of the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA)’s Access to space for all Bartolomeo programmes. The selection would see the countries launch a remote-sensing payload that will fly onboard the International Space Station to monitor weather, floods and climate change.
  • Monitoring for Information and Decisions using Space Technology (MIDST) which helps to improve investigations into the nation’s forest cover, urbanisation and environmental monitoring.
  • KSA has developed and submitted the first draft to the National Commission for Science, Technology and Innovation (NACOSTI) to convert the Longonot satellite station into an observatory. The project is estimated to cost USD 4-5 million.
  • Kenya is also collaborating with five other African nations under the umbrella of the African Development Satellite Initiative. The programme was designed to facilitate the launch of a pan-African satellite project.
  • Partnership with SayariLabs and Endurosat to develop and launch Taifa-1, a 3U EO satellite in February 2023.
  • Strategic partnerships with local and foreign institutions to promote space education and awareness in Kenya through special joint programmes. 
  • Human capital development in satellite development across Kenyan educational institutions, as part of the agency’s commitment to supporting space systems engineering and development research in Kenya.
About the New Director

Brigadier Hillary Biwott Kipkosgey before his recent promotion to the Director of KSA assumed the Acting DG position on 29 June 2021 on secondment from the Kenya Defence Forces. His work experience spans 28 years, with 26 years in the military and 2 years in the private sector.

Previously, he was the Head of Logistics and Maintenance at the multi-agency National Air Support Department (NASD) from November 2020 to June 2021. Prior to that, he served as the Defence, Military, Naval and Air Attaché at the Kenya Embassy in Washington DC – accredited to the USA and Canada – from February 2017 to September 2020. Brigadier Kipkosgey has held several other appointments in his service, which include Commanding Officer Technical Wing, and Head of Coordination at the National Counter Terrorism Centre (NCTC).

He also served as Head of Information and Communications Technology Division at NCTC, 2IC Technical Wing, Senior Instructor at the Defence Forces Technical College (DEFTEC), OIC Software Development at the Defence Forces HQs, Instructor at DEFTEC and Officer Commanding Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, among other appointments.

Brigadier Kipkosgey was commissioned in the Kenya Defence Forces as a Lieutenant in October 1994 and rose through the ranks to become Colonel in July 2016. He has served in the UN Mission as a Military Observer in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) in 2006/2007, as a Team Site Member, Team Site Leader and eventually as Chief G5 at the Katanga Brigade HQs in Lubumbashi, DRC.

Brigadier Kipkosgey holds a Master of Strategic Studies, a Master of Science in Communication and Information systems, a Post Graduate Diploma in Strategic Studies and a Bachelor of Technology in Electrical and Communications Engineering. He is a graduate of the U.S. 2 Army War College, Carlisle, Pennsylvania. He has attended Senior Command Course at the Joint Warfare Centre in Kenya, Senior Command and Staff Course in Tanzania, and Defence Staff College in Kenya, among other professional, leadership, command and management courses.

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