Augustine graduated from Princeton University in 1959. He began his career at Douglas Aircraft, rising quickly from research engineering to management positions. He then went into the military-industrial revolving door in the 1960's and 1970's, holding senior management positions within the Department of Defense; Vought/LTV; the Defence Department again; the office of the President; and then NASA. He joined Martin Marietta in 1977 as a Vice President, finishing up as President and CEO in 1987, and Chairman of the Board thereafter.
In 1990 he was appointed to head the Advisory Committee on the Future of the U.S. Space Program for the Bush administration. This panel produced the "Augustine Report", the Report of the Advisory Committee on the Future of the U.S. Space Program. The study defined NASA's over extension, proposed concentration on a 'Mission to Earth (a network of satellites for detailed study of the environment) and a 'Mission from Earth' (a space station as the first step toward the exploration of Mars). The report was enormously important in charting the course of the space program in the first half of the 1990s.
Augustine was also the other of "Augustine's Laws", a trenchant and humorous examination of aerospace industry practices and management. Examples include:
Birth Place: Denver, Colorado.