Comtech hires former Leidos exec as operations chief

She will lead efforts to improve production capabilities and delivery schedules as Comtech's second-highest ranking executive.

Comtech Telecommunications Corp. has hired a new chief operating officer in Maria Hedden, formerly a senior vice president at Leidos and a two-decade defense market veteran.

She will be responsible for leading Comtech’s efforts to improve its production capabilities and delivery schedules by working with and expanding engineering and operation teams, Comtech said Wednesday.

This appointment comes nearly three months after the public safety and satellite communications company got a new CEO in Michael Porcelain, who formerly was its COO and succeeded long-time leader Fred Kornberg.

Kornberg remains non-executive chairman of Comtech's board of directors.

While at Leidos, Hedden was senior VP of operational transformation with responsibility over an initiative to establish greater manufacturing excellence.

She joined Leidos through that company’s acquisition in early 2020 of the former L3Harris security detection and automation business, which she led as president prior to the sale.

Prior to L3Harris and its heritage business L3 Technologies, she was an executive at BAE Systems and led a push to introduce leaner manufacturing processes in that company’s European division and land and armament unit.