//Kathryn Hughes, MD, Colonel, USAF (Ret)
Kathryn Hughes, MD, Colonel, USAF (Ret)

Project Description

Kathryn Hughes MD

Key Specialties

  • Human Systems Integration (HSI)

  • Human Factors

  • Life Support Equipment Integration

  • Aerospace Physiology

  • Aircraft Accident Investigation


Kathryn Hughes, MD

Colonel, US Air Force (Retired)

Colonel Kathryn Hughes, MD, USAF (Ret), has over 25 years of experience in aviation and aerospace medicine with collaborative work across the Department of Defense (DOD), international military services, and as a consultant to government and industry. She has extensive experience in human systems integration (HSI), human factors, aerospace physiology, life support equipment integration, and accident investigation—from both physician and pilot perspectives. Dr. Hughes is board certified in aerospace and occupational medicine and is currently a practicing physician.

Significant Career Accomplishments

  • Medical member of the F-35 Class B mishap safety investigation board that examined hypoxia symptoms following engine bleed failure, integrated power plant (IPP) shutdown and cabin depressurization.
  • Over 3,100 hours as a military pilot-physician, primarily in the T-38, RC-135, A-10, and Royal Air Force Hawk.
  • Led aerospace/occupational medicine support to the F-22 flight test program and F-35 developmental (DT&E) and operational test and evaluation (OT&E).
  • Directed the executive agency for HSI in the USAF Medical Service and Line of the Air Force, responsible for optimizing warfighter capability through an Airman-centric approach to system development, sustainment, and enhancement.
  • Recognized subject matter expert in mitigation of G-induced loss of consciousness (GLOC) with significant experience as both a subject and safety pilot for ground/flight trials of life support equipment integration.

Key Positions

  • Occupational Medicine Physician, Excel Corporate Care
  • Senior Consultant, Martin Baker
  • Director, Human Systems Integration Directorate, 711th Human Performance Wing, Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL)
  • Chief, Aerospace Medicine Branch, HQ Air Force Reserve Command (AFRC)
  • Commander, 412th Aerospace Medicine Squadron, Chief of Aerospace Medicine
  • Senior Medical Officer/Pilot, Royal Air Force (RAF) Centre of Aviation Medicine
  • A-10 Pilot Physician, Chief of Aerospace Medicine, Idaho Air National Guard (ANG)


  • Doctor of Medicine (MD), University of Nebraska Medical Center
  • Diploma in Aviation Medicine, Kings College London, Royal College of Physicians
  • Master of Public Health (MPH), Health Management and Policy, University of Michigan School of Public Health
  • BS, Biology (Minor in Arabic), US Air Force Academy (USAFA)
  • Certificate in Human Systems Integration, Naval Postgraduate School (NPS)
  • Air War College
  • Air Command and Staff College
  • Squadron Officer’s School (Distinguished Graduate)