Space Foundation honors the California Institute of Technology with Jack Swigert Award for Space Exploration


Today the Space Foundation announced the 2007 recipient of the Jack Swigert Award for Space Exploration. The astronomical observatories, scientists, researchers, and students of the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) will be honored with the award Monday, April 9 in Colorado Springs during the Opening Ceremony of the 23rd National Space Symposium. The award honors the memory of Apollo 13 astronaut and Colorado Congressman-elect Jack Swigert. The National Space Symposium is the premier annual space industry conference and will take place April 9-12, 2007, at The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs.

"Over the decades, Caltech has provided us with eyes to explore the universe and guides to improve our understanding of what we see there," said Elliot G. Pulham, president and chief executive officer of the Space Foundation. "We are pleased to honor Caltech for its enormous body of astronomical research that expands our knowledge of the universe."

The California Institute of Technology was chosen as the recipient of the Jack Swigert Award for Space Exploration for the trailblazing body of astronomy research and discoveries made by the Caltech astronomy community and the successful management of one of the world's most impressive portfolio of observatories - the telescopes of the Palomar Observatory, the W.M. Keck Observatory, the Owens Valley Radio Observatory, the Chajnanator Observatory, the Caltech Submillimeter Observatory, the Big Bear Solar Observatory, and the Robinson/ Downs Rooftop Observatories.

The Space Foundation was founded in 1983, in part to honor the memory and accomplishments of astronaut John L. "Jack" Swigert, Jr. The Space Foundation created the Jack Swigert Award for Space Exploration in 2004 in tribute to his enduring legacy of space exploration. The NASA Mars Exploration Team was the first recipient of the award. The 2005 recipient was President George W. Bush. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) was the 2006 recipient.

A Colorado native, Swigert served with CAPT James Lovell, USN (Retired), and Fred Haise on the legendary Apollo 13 lunar mission, which was aborted after the perilous rupture of an oxygen tank en route to the moon. People around the world watched as NASA overcame tremendous odds to return the crew safely to Earth. Before joining the Apollo program, Swigert served with the U.S. Air Force as a combat pilot in Japan and Korea and then as an engineering test pilot for North American Aviation, Inc. and Pratt and Whitney. In 1982, he was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives. He died of cancer before taking the oath of office.

The opening ceremony during which Caltech will receive the Jack Swigert Award is co-sponsored by Northrop Grumman. It will be followed by an opening reception, co-sponsored by the Colorado Space Coalition, and opening night fireworks and dessert reception, co-sponsored by United Space Alliance. Featured speakers and panel discussions during the remaining three days of the 23rd National Space Symposium will address civil, commercial, and national security space issues. Confirmed featured speakers at the conference are Under Secretary of the Air Force The Honorable Dr. Ronald M. Sega, NASA Administrator The Honorable Dr. Michael D. Griffin, Director of the National Reconnaissance Office Dr. Donald M. Kerr, Chief of Staff of the Air Force Gen T. Michael Moseley, Commander of United States Strategic Command Gen James E. Cartwright, USMC, Commander of Air Force Space Command Gen Kevin P. Chilton, and Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Lockheed Martin Corporation Mr. Robert J. Stevens.

Highlights of the 23rd National Space Symposium also include an extensive exhibit center showcasing more than 140 companies and organizations, co-sponsored by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp.; the Corporate Partnership dinner, co-sponsored by Raytheon Company; the presentation of the Space Foundation's highest honor, the General James E. Hill Lifetime Space Achievement Award, at a luncheon co-sponsored by The Boeing Company; and the Space Technology Hall of Fame dinner, co-sponsored by Lockheed Martin.

Additional sponsors of the symposium are Analytical Graphics, Inc. (AGI), ATK, BAE Systems, BearingPoint, Cisco Systems, CSP Associates, General Dynamics, Infinite Links, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Stellar Solutions, and ITT. Media partners for the 23rd National Space Symposium are Aviation Week, Space News, and The New York Times. Frontier Airlines is the official airline of the conference.

Visit www.NationalSpaceSymposium.org for secure online registration and a complete agenda and list of speakers.

About the Space Foundation

Founded in 1983 and headquartered in Colorado Springs, the Space Foundation is a national nonprofit organization that vigorously advances civil, commercial, and national security space endeavors and inspires, enables, and propels tomorrow's explorers. The Space Foundation also has an office in Washington, D.C., and Field Representatives in New York, Houston and Cape Canaveral, Fla. The Space Foundation is a leader in space awareness activities, trade association services, research and analysis for the global space industry, and educational enterprises that bring space into the classroom. Along with partnering organizations, the Space Foundation also conducts Strategic Space and Defense (Oct. 9-11, 2007), in Omaha, Neb. For more information, visit www.SpaceFoundation.org.

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