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Adrian Morris, CTO and Engineering Trailblazer, Named an Inspiring Leader

Adrian Morris, CTO

For over 40 years, Hughes has benefited from Adrian Morris’ brilliant engineering mind – as our Chief Technology Officer, he’s been involved directly in many of our groundbreaking contributions to the telecommunications industry. Not only does he possess technological expertise, he also is passionate about mentoring and developing the next generation of engineers. We’ve always known he was an inspiring leader, but we are proud to announce that he was selected as a 2022 Inspiring Leader by Inspiring Workplaces, an organization dedicated to improving the world of work. Established during the pandemic, the award recognizes leaders who have stepped up to help individuals, teams and organizations navigate personal and business challenges and create truly inspirational places to work.

Inspiring Workplaces notes the four essential qualities of an inspiring leader:

  • They are humane––They are kind and show gratitude; they empathize and are inclusive and authentic.
  • They are courageous––They’re resilient and calm. They give people a sense of certainty and control; make the abnormal seem normal; and are forward thinking.
  • They communicate––They communicate clearly, consistently and frequently. They enable people to use their voices; listen and act on feedback; and foster collaboration.
  • They unleash potential––They trust and empower; help people learn new skills; and build belief.

And in fact, Morris has embodied these qualities for decades.

As George Choquette, senior vice president of Engineering, noted: “I have known Adrian for the past 27 years, working directly under him on countless projects since 1995. He can get to the heart of an issue while simultaneously determining the key success factors.”

Senior vice president Bob Kepley said: “Adrian’s vision is unparalleled – when others may imply ‘we can’t,’ he says, ‘we can.’ His leadership spans the spectrum from senior management to the deepest technical detail.”

Morris joined Hughes in 1982, working as a hardware designer on telephony and video products as well as on Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA), a digital modulation technique used in digital cellular telephone and mobile radio communications. Later, as senior vice president of Engineering, he led the hardware design for the Very Small Aperture Terminal (VSAT). Under his leadership, Hughes has defined the VSAT market and maintained more than 50% share of both the domestic and global satellite markets. This enduring relevance comes from constant innovations in hardware and software technologies associated with satellite communications. More recently, Morris headed the development of the industry-leading Hughes JUPITER™ System, the ground system that powers millions of terminals around the world and connects more GEO satellites than any other ground platform in the market.

In 2023, again under Morris’ leadership, Hughes plans to launch our newest Ultra-High-Density Satellite, JUPITER 3, which will dramatically expand the overall reach and capacity of the JUPITER fleet across the Americas. With two to three times the Ka-band capacity of JUPITER 2, JUPITER 3 is expected to be the world’s largest commercial communications satellite when it launches, bringing total capacity of the JUPITER fleet to more than 1 Tbps.

While Morris is a brilliant engineer, he is also an approachable and sensitive individual focused on creating a work environment in which others’ thoughts and ideas are heard and considered. As leader of the “Engineering Mentor Program” at Hughes, aimed at helping recent university graduates integrate smoothly into the company culture, Morris answers questions and concerns and gives new team members an open forum to feel heard and appreciated. Throughout his 40+ years at Hughes, Morris has demonstrated all the qualities cited by the Inspiring Leaders award. Most of all, however, he has unleashed the potential of hundreds Hughes engineers and helped enable the company to deliver essential connectivity to families, communities, businesses and governments around the world.

If you or someone you know is interested in a career in engineering, check out the available positions at Hughes for fulltime as well as college intern positions.