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Theresa Brunasso

President, D&S Microwave

Theresa Brunasso was part of the team that designed the antenna that landed the rover Curiosity on the surface of Mars in August 2012 and more recently landed the rover Perseverance on Mars in 2021. The project required a team of microwave, mechanical and manufacturing engineers to build an antenna capable of withstanding 135 degrees Celsius and ranks as the highlight of her career.

What are your primary day-to-day responsibilities as President of D&S Microwave?

D&S Microwave is my consulting company, so I do everything including business development, billing, and most importantly, technical work. Right now, I’m six months into a couple of three-year contracts with Georgia Tech Research Initiative. They are keeping my life busy doing full-time design work.

How did UWF prepare you for such a long and successful career?

I was in the Navy stationed at Naval Technical Training Center Corry Station while I was at UWF, and serving full time while getting a physics degree was challenging. My professors were both supportive and encouraging. The classes weren’t easy, but they convinced us that we could do the work.

What are some of your favorite UWF memories outside of the classroom?

Our physics club had lots of fun. One year, we went to the annual Physics Society Meeting in New Orleans during Mardi Gras. The conference was interesting, and we had a blast at the parades.