Harrison A. "Stormy" Storms, Jr., was born in 1915 in Chicago, Illinois. He attended Northwestern University and graduated with a master of science degree in mechanical engineering in 1938. Storms then attended the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), earning a master of science degree in aeronautical engineering. At Caltech he studied under Theodore von Karman and worked in the wind tunnels at the Guggenheim Aeronautical Laboratory (GALCIT).

In 1940, Storms went to work on the P-51 Mustang at North American Aviation, where he developed a reputation as an expert on wind flow and high-speed aircraft. He subsequently worked on the F-86 and F-100 jet fighters. In 1957, Storms became vice president and chief engineer of the Los Angeles Division, where he led the development of the XB-70 bomber. In 1959, he became vice president for program development, in charge of the development of the Apollo spacecraft. Between 1961 and 1967, he served as president of the Space and Information Systems Division, an organization that peaked at more than 35,000 employees in 1965. Storms took the brunt of the blame for the Apollo 1 fire and stepped out of the public eye, although he continued as a company vice president. The AIAA honored him with the 1970 Aircraft Design Award. Storms died in Los Angles in July 1992.[25]