Teddy L. Houston, a retired Air Force civilian employee who served from 2007 to 2010 as board chairman of the NATO Airborne Early Warning and Control Program Management Organization, died May 11 at his home in Washington. He was 65.

The cause was lung cancer and emphysema, said his life partner, Robert M. Quilter.

Mr. Houston served on active duty in the Air Force in the early 1970s, then began a civilian career with increasingly more significant positions as a contract negotiator. In 1999, he was named deputy program executive officer for command and control programs, and he soon left the Air Force for a job as a top-level assistant at NATO in Washington.

Teddy Lovett Houston was born in Opelika, Ala., where his father was stationed with the Air Force. At Auburn University in Alabama, he received a bachelor’s degree in economics in 1971 and a bachelor’s degree in experimental psychology in 1974.

He received a master’s degree in business and management from Central Michigan University in 1980 and a master’s degree in national security strategy from the National War College in Washington in 1995. He was a fellow in public and international affairs at Princeton University in 1988.

In 2000, he became a founding partner of Quilter/Houston Fine Arts. He participated in antiques shows around the mid-Atlantic states.

Survivors include his partner of 14 years, Robert M. Quilter of Baltimore; a twin brother; another brother; and a sister.

— Adam Bernstein