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  7/20, 10/10: Ambassador of Exploration John F. Kennedy award ceremony (DC, TX)

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Author Topic:   7/20, 10/10: Ambassador of Exploration John F. Kennedy award ceremony (DC, TX)
Robert Pearlman
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Posts: 27327
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 07-27-2009 10:47 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
NASA photo release


Photo credit: NASA/Bill Ingalls
NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, Rice University student Max Paul, former Maryland Lt. Governor and niece of President John F. Kennedy, Kathleen Kennedy Townsend and Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins pose in front of the Ambassador of Exploration Award given posthumously to President Kennedy and accepted on behalf of his family by Townsend at the Apollo 40th anniversary celebration held at the National Air and Space Museum, on July 20, 2009 in Washington, DC.

The award will be on permanent display at Rice University at the request of the Kennedy family.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27327
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 07-27-2009 10:51 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Rice University release
Rock and roll with it
Surprised Rice student accepts moon rock awarded to JFK

Jones College senior Max Paul had read about the 40th anniversary of man's landing on the moon with interest Monday morning.

What he didn't know was that evening he'd be celebrating the event with the Apollo 11 crew.

With legendary astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins standing to his left and new NASA administrator Charles Bolden to his right, Paul accepted a gift on behalf of Rice University from the niece of President John F. Kennedy during an anniversary bash at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

The gift was a moon rock -- a real, authentic moon rock -- given to Rice by Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, the former lieutenant governor of Maryland and daughter of Robert Kennedy, on behalf of her uncle, JFK. It represented one of NASA's highest honors, the Ambassador of Exploration Award, given to individuals who have contributed to the realization of America's goal of landing a man on the moon.

NASA, which has honored veterans and friends of the space program for many years, gave the award to JFK, since it was his directive that sent the United States to the moon. One caveat is that the award that contains the rock remains the property of NASA, and honorees are asked to select an educational institution or museum where it can be displayed and appreciated by all.

This is where Rice comes in and where luck trumps planning.

The call to Paul came at 5:30 p.m. Monday, a mere two-and-a-half hours before the event for a packed house of 2,000 invited guests and not too long after someone realized the original intended recipient already had a moon rock.

"My friend (Jones College senior) Danny Newman, who works in the Rice government office, called, and then his boss talked to me," said the low-key Paul, an electrical engineering student interning at Washington consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton this summer. "They needed someone to accept for Rice that night, and quick.

"I figured these kinds of things happen in D.C. a lot, but I didn't think it was going to happen that soon," he said, delivering an understatement to beat all.

The young man from St. Louis kept his cool, put his suit jacket back on and made his way to the museum, where the presentation went off without a hitch.

He assumed it was Townsend's idea to send the valuable prize Rice's way. "She told me it made the most sense," Paul said, noting that a video of JFK's famous 1962 speech at Rice was part of the ceremony.

He characterized Townsend as "very nice, a very fun person" and said he got a few minutes to talk to the Apollo 11 crew. "I asked them how it was, and they said it was an amazing experience that they'll never forget. They seemed very energetic and happy about the event."

The chunk of moon is part of the 842 pounds of samples brought back to Earth during the six Apollo lunar expeditions from 1969 to 1972. "It was a rock inside of Lucite," Paul said of the award. "I got to hold it for a second and then I put it down on the stand and the folks from NASA took it."

It will eventually find its way to the campus. A NASA official said the agency hopes to hold a presentation at Rice in the very near future.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27327
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 10-05-2009 11:22 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
NASA release
NASA Honors JFK with Moon Rock to be Displayed at Rice University

On the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 landing on the moon, NASA honored President John F. Kennedy with an Ambassador of Exploration Award for his vision and leadership in landing a man on the moon. The Kennedy family has selected Rice University to house and publicly display the award, a lunar sample, at Fondren Library. Kennedy called for a national initiative to go to the moon during a speech given at Rice University on Sept. 12, 1962.

Michael Coats, a former astronaut and director of NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston, will present the moon rock to Rice University President David Leebron on Saturday, Oct. 10, during a halftime ceremony at the Rice versus Navy football game. NASA astronauts George Zamka, a graduate of the Naval Academy, and Danny Olivas, a graduate of Rice, will serve as honorary captains for their alma maters during the game's coin toss.

Game-day attendees can see and touch a moon rock and learn about the space shuttle, International Space Station and future exploration programs by visiting the agency's "Driven to Explore" exhibit. The exhibit will be open from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. CDT at the stadium's Tailgate Owley outside Rice Stadium Gate 3. Zamka and Olivas will sign autographs from 1 to 2 p.m. at the NASA exhibit.

NASA is giving the Ambassador of Exploration Award to the first generation of explorers in the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo space programs for realizing America's goal of going to the moon. The award is a moon rock encased in Lucite, mounted for public display. The rock is part of the 842 pounds of lunar samples collected during six Apollo expeditions from 1969 to 1972.

NASA Television will air a video file with highlights following the event.

space4u
Member

Posts: 296
From: Cleveland, OH USA
Registered: Aug 2006

posted 10-06-2009 05:48 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for space4u   Click Here to Email space4u     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Too bad the schedule didn't have Rice vs. Texas for this presentation of the award. That would have been perfect!

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27327
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 10-11-2009 12:02 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote

Photo credit: NASA/Lauren Harnett
Rice University Accepts Exploration Award

During the half-time ceremonies of the Rice vs. Navy football game Oct. 10, 2009, Johnson Space Center Director Mike Coats presented Rice University President David Leebron with the Ambassador of Exploration Award that was presented posthumously to President John F. Kennedy. From left to right are Rep. Pete Olsen (R-TX), Rice University President David Leebron and JSC Director Michael Coats holding the award.

On July 20, the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, NASA honored President Kennedy with the award for his vision and leadership in landing a man on the moon. The Kennedy family has selected Rice University to house and publicly display the award at Fondren Library. President Kennedy called for a national initiative to go to the moon during a speech given at Rice University on Sept. 12, 1962.


Credit: NASA TV

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