Office of Student Life

Buckeye Leadership Fellows Program

Matt Desch

Title: C.E.O., Iridium Communications

Mr. Desch has more than 40 years of experience in telecommunications management, and more than 30 years in the global wireless industry. Mr. Desch joined Iridium in 2006.

He has been responsible for leading Iridium's innovation and growth, which includes taking the company public on NASDAQ and launching the company’s $3B next generation satellite network which was completed in 2019.  Iridium is based in northern Virginia, just outside Washington DC and is a major satellite operator supplying mobile and personal communications to many government and commercial industries and customers all over the world.

Before joining Iridium, Mr. Desch served as the CEO of New Jersey-based Telcordia Technologies, Inc., a supplier of software and services to the telecommunications industry (now part of Ericsson SA). Prior to Telcordia, Mr. Desch worked for Nortel Networks as president of Nortel's fast growing Wireless Networks.  He started his career at AT&T Bell Laboratories.

U.S. President Barack Obama appointed Mr. Desch as a member of the National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee. The committee provides recommendations to the President and other government leaders on matters of security that relate to the nation's telecommunications infrastructure. An active pilot, he is a Trustee of the Aircraft Owners & Pilots Association (AOPA) and on the Board of the Smithsonian National Air & Space Museum.

Matt is a 1980 graduate of The Ohio State University (BS, Computer Science) and received an MBA from the University of Chicago.