Susan (Brechting) Kiehl

Susan Kiehl
  • BS Metallurgical Engineering 1983
Susan Brechting Kiehl '83 leads Lockheed Martin's F-35 International Business Development organization. She is based at the Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company in Fort Worth, Texas.

Kiehl, a native of Spring Lake, graduated from Michigan Tech with a Bachelor of Science in Metallurgical Engineering. She joined Lockheed Martin (then General Dynamics) as a metallurgical engineer in 1984 and then became an engineering chief and engineering manager. In 1999, she moved into business development, where she served as a manager and a director. In 2003, she was selected as the program director for the Greece F-16 programs, responsible for the sale, design, construction and delivery of thirty F-16s, known as the Fighting Falcons, to Greece. In addition, she was also responsible for the Poland and Italy F-16 programs.

In 2001, Kiehl was selected for the company's Senior Leadership Development Program and, in 2002, it's Executive Leadership Development Program. She now leads a team responsible for the sale of the F-35 Lightening II aircraft to all foreign customers.

Kiehl serves on the Industrial Advisory Board of Michigan Tech's College of Engineering and is a member of the Presidential Council of Alumnae. She returned to her alma mater on April 29, 2006, to deliver the Spring Commencement address. "Michigan Tech provided me a wonderful education and equipped me with the necessary foundation to excel in the workplace," Kiehl says. "To be asked to come back to speak to this next generation of leaders at a place I hold in only the highest regard was just an incredible thrill and honor."

"We visited Houghton every summer growing up. There was never any question where I wanted to go to college," Kiehl says. In addition to her own ties to Michigan Tech, her grandfather, Gilly Boyd, taught at the university; her father, Frank Brechting, earned two bachelor's degrees and a master's degree from the school; and her brother, Frank, also graduated from Michigan Tech.

Kiehl is involved in church activities and Alzheimer's work. She runs marathons and relishes what she calls "the joys of children." She has three, Sam, Lilli and Isabelle. The family resides in Fort Worth.

Excerpted from Tech Today (4-18-06)

Updated February 2009