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Head of Business Development, Defense

Whisper Aero

Whisper Aero

Sales & Business Development
Nashville, TN, USA
Posted on Tuesday, January 23, 2024

Our Company

Whisper Aero, a leader in air propulsion technology, focuses on delivering cleaner, quieter, and more efficient thrust solutions. Our team, with over a decade of experience in electric propulsion, includes experts from NASA, Lockheed Martin, Boeing, and other industry giants. We pride ourselves on a culture of ambition, creativity, and teamwork, constantly seeking innovative minds ready to challenge norms and drive progress in our field.

About the Role

The Head of Business Development role at Whisper Aero plays a pivotal role in identifying, shaping, and capturing new opportunities in the defense sector, while also expanding our current capabilities. This role requires a profound understanding of our customers' challenges and requirements, recognizing where existing solutions fall short, and articulating how Whisper Aero’s innovative products can redefine mission effectiveness. As a key ambassador of Whisper Aero, you will communicate our technological edge to a diverse external audience, including customers, end users, PEOs, and partners, while your insights will directly influence business strategies and product development. Your responsibilities encompass crafting strategic business development roadmaps, identifying and deepening trusted relationships with key defense stakeholders, and leading initiatives that enhance Whisper Aero’s market position and financial performance, ensuring our products meet the evolving needs of the defense sector.

What You’ll Do

Business Opportunity Development and Revenue Growth: You will actively seek out and identify new business prospects, using your deep understanding of the aerospace and defense market to strategically position Whisper Aero. Your role will focus on increasing revenue by engaging with both existing and potential clients, crafting strategies tailored to defense cycles and specific customer requirements.

Product Collaboration and Client-Driven Innovation: In collaboration with the product and engineering teams, you'll work on expanding our existing contracts and exploring new project avenues. Your insights from client interactions will directly inform and shape Whisper Aero’s product roadmap, ensuring that our offerings align with market demands and client requirements.

Brand Advocacy and Market Communication: As the face of Whisper Aero to external government and defense stakeholders, your responsibility includes articulating our technological edge and company values. You'll engage in discussions and presentations that highlight our competitive advantages in the defense technology sector, reinforcing our position as an industry leader.

Government Contract Acquisition and Management: Your role will be pivotal in identifying and managing government contract opportunities. This includes creating compelling proposals, ensuring compliance with contract regulations, and establishing strong, ongoing relationships with key figures in military and civilian sectors. You'll be tasked with steering these contracts towards successful outcomes, aligning them with Whisper Aero's business goals and financial targets.

Basic Qualifications

  • B.S. in STEM-related field
  • US Person Status
  • Prior military experience
  • 5 years of relevant Program Management (e.g., managing defense contracts, leading aerospace technology projects), acquisitions or business development experience in the government and/or private sector
  • Ability to obtain and hold a U.S. TS/SCI clearance
  • Ability to travel 25 – 50%
  • Ability to interface with a wide range of prospective customers, from startups with little knowledge of aircraft/propulsion to prime or government customers who have significant expertise in the field
  • Experience with defense policy and budget issues and knowledge of the defense and national security sector and key stakeholders
  • Demonstrated knowledge of relevant DoD Programs and platforms and related enabling technologies
  • Strong interpersonal and negotiation skills

Bonus Qualifications

  • MBA
  • Existing TS/SCI clearance
  • Experience with government business development, government contract structures, government proposal processes, and SBA SBIR/STTR contracts
  • Experience working with UAV and/or piloted aircraft platforms
  • Strong connections with PEOs and DoD decision makers
  • Demonstrated success in leading and scaling a business for the DoD in the $100M range


  • Top-tier Benefits: 100% paid Medical, dental, and vision for employees, 75% paid for dependents
  • PTO & Federal Holidays: Starting at four weeks of paid time off for vacation, sick, and personal days
  • Competitive Salary: Value-based compensation, plus enjoy Tennessee’s no-income-tax life
  • End of Year Bonuses: For eligible employees
  • Paid Lunches: Lunches MWF + drinks and snacks to keep you going throughout the day
  • 401(k)
  • Relocation Assistance
  • Professional Development Stipend

Whisper Aero is proud to be an Equal Opportunity employer committed to diversity and inclusivity in the workplace. All aspects of employment are decided on the basis of merit, qualifications, and business needs. We do not discriminate based upon race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, gender identity or any other characteristic protected by federal, state or local laws. Whisper Aero also participates in E-Verify and will provide the Social Security Administration (SSA) and, if necessary, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), with information from each applicant's Form I-9 to confirm work authorization.