• 2019 GMiS Luminary •


Principal Manufacturing Engineer
F-35 Lightening II Joint Strike Fighter Ctr., Fuselage Program
Northrop Grumman Corporation

Brian Gonzalez is currently a Principal Manufacturing Engineering for the F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter Center Fuselage program at Northrop Grumman. A member of the dedicated CORE team of manufacturing engineers, he is a project lead for an automated metrology project and provides technical expertise on manufacturing processes, procedures, and production layouts. His technical abilities, paired with his stellar interpersonal skills, have resulted in millions of dollars of savings for the company over the life of the F-35 program. 

Mr. Gonzalez’s strong passion for diversity and inclusion initiatives was instrumental in establishing a SHPE student chapter at the newly opened University of California, Merced where he earned his B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering. As the first ever alumni of the college to be offered a position at General Motors, he understood the importance of networking and relationship building and hosted various events on campus to share his story, creating relationships with underprivileged high school kids. Today, Mr. Gonzalez leads similar initiatives through Northrop Grumman's One Adelante partnership with Great Minds in STEM, bringing Viva Technology to middle and high schools.

Born in West Covina, California, Mr. Gonzalez was the first in his family to graduate college after a high school curriculum filled with honors classes. While attending his first engineering conference in 2013, an interaction discussing his passion for motorsports with an engineer from General Motors soon led to an unexpected job offer at the GM Proving Grounds in Milford, Michigan.

Eventually, Mr. Gonzalez missed his family and friends back in California and decided to seek out opportunities closer to home. In 2015 he joined the Northrup Grumman team in his current role, his first on a manufacturing line and in aerospace. Any trepidation he may have had about changing industries quickly evaporated as he made a seamless transition to his new responsibilities.

The return to California also gave Mr. Gonzalez the opportunity to reengage his passion for racing cars.  He joined his friend’s race team at the 2017 SCORE Baja 500 in Ensenada. He and his brother are excited to participate in the race this year as drivers for the first time.