STEM Professional of the week

Anthony H. Zertuche, Jr.      
Booz Allen Hamilton

Booz Allen Hamilton
HENAAC 2012 Executive Excellence Winner

Mr. Anthony H. Zertuche is a key technology leader guiding Booz Allen Hamilton’s emergent $10 million military healthcare market including Army, Air Force, Navy, and Joint services. As a senior executive with over 35 years of experience, he is a Principal managing nearly 150 technology staff members in three cyber Centers of Excellence located in Texas, New Mexico and Louisiana. Mr. Zertuche also heads the Systems Development Leadership for the Aerospace Market Group Account conducting risk assessments for software projects. On a corporate level, he is the lead principal in charge of recruiting and retention for the Hispanic Agenda, a firm wide diversity initiative for Hispanic staff.

Mr. Zertuche’s path towards a technology career began at a young age. As a boy growing up in the Apollo era, he dreamed that one day he would work for NASA. One of six children raised by modest hardworking parents in San Antonio, Texas, he knew that if he was going to make that dream come true, he would have to find a way to pay for his college education. American football was taking hold in Mexican universities so when he was offered a football scholarship to the Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores in Monterrey México, he jumped at the opportunity.

His college years were filled with challenges including studying in a non-English environment with minimal knowledge of Spanish, as well as dealing with language and cultural barriers on a daily basis. Determined to meet his goals he hung up a sign over his desk that read “Someday I will work for NASA.” With that daily visual reminder and with support from his future bride, he worked harder and successfully mastered the culture and the courses of an international university. Mr. Zertuche graduated with a B.S. degree in computer science becoming the first in his family to earn a college education, setting the path for those who followed.

Upon graduation, he was hired as a contractor by Lockheed Martin to work for NASA in Houston. While at Lockheed Martin, he designed and conducted hardware and software tests on space shuttle inertial system components. After two years with Lockheed Martin, Mr. Zertuche reached his professional goal and landed a key role at NASA as a Space Shuttle Guidance Navigation and Control (GN&C) flight controller in the Mission Control Center at Johnson Space Center. When the space shuttle first launched, Mr. Zertuche was one of the people sitting in the control room, advising and guiding the mission. For the first eight space shuttle flights from 1978 to 1983, Mr. Zertuche was responsible for the monitoring, trouble shooting and in-flight test data of the space shuttle GN&C systems for the ascent, orbit and entry phases of flight.

Mr. Zertuche joined Booz Allen Hamilton 23 years ago and since then has helped the strategy and technology consulting firm establish its Houston office and manage its space business market. He leads the firms regional Latin American Forum Development Series. This annual professional development event offers mentoring circles, panel discussions and other programs that raise Hispanic cultural awareness. A natural leader and role model, he is a willing mentor for junior staff members, who often reach out to him for career advice. Mr. Zertuche has embraced leadership roles with an innate sense of responsibility and made a powerful impact in the Houston office.

His generosity also extends to his local community where he is an advocate for Booz Allen’s “Rebuilding Together” team in Houston which is part of the city’s largest community outreach organization providing home repairs and renovations at no cost to low income homeowners in need. A role model for youth, you will often find him speaking about career and life experiences to Hispanic youth groups in San Antonio. He also provides financial support to high school students making a difference in their community through the Patricia Oathout Mount Sacred Heart Community Service High School Scholarship. Mr. Zertuche has been married for 35 years and has two grown children.

View More Professionals of the Week