Press Release

NASA Administrator announces distinguished team to review International Space Station

By SpaceRef Editor
July 31, 2001
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A diverse team of world-renowned experts, including two
Nobel laureates and the world’s most famous heart surgeon,
make up an independent task force created by NASA
Administrator Daniel S. Goldin to take a focused look at the
budget and management challenges facing the International
Space Station program.

“In the last year, we have successfully carried out all of
the 14 scheduled assembly missions to the International Space
Station. We did so with unbelievable precision and execution,
completing the second phase of space station construction,”
said Administrator Goldin. “It’s an incredible management and
engineering achievement, but we must ensure it is carried out
in a more efficient and effective manner.”

The ISS Management and Cost Evaluation Task Force (IMCE) will
help NASA address the recent cost growth on the program by
assessing the quality of the ISS cost estimates as well as
program assumptions and requirements, and identifying high-
risk budget areas and potential risk mitigation strategies.

“Since April, we’ve been working to select a team of
outstanding innovators in the fields of science, engineering,
finance and business to advise NASA and the Administration
how to maximize the scientific returns on the station, while
living within the guidelines of the President’s budget,”
added Administrator Goldin. “The financial management of the
International Space Station needs an overhaul, but we’re
going to do it in a way that doesn’t sacrifice safety.”

Two Nobel Prize winners are among the members of the IMCE
Task Force. Dr. Richard Roberts shared the1993 Nobel Prize in
Physiology of Medicine for the discovery of “split genes.” He
is currently the head of the Department of Bioinformatics and
Research at New England Biolabs, Beverly, MA.

Another panel member, Dr. Robert Richardson, is Vice-Provost
for Research at Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, and shared
the 1996 Nobel Prize for the discovery of superfluidity in
the isotope helium-3 (3He).

Another prominent task force member is world-renowned medical
pioneer, Dr. Michael DeBakey, Chancellor Emeritus of Baylor
College of Medicine in Texas and an active staff member at
The Methodist Hospital of Houston. Dr. DeBakey is
internationally recognized for his innovations in open-heart
surgery and his recent pioneering work in the field of

Administrator Goldin appointed Thomas Young chair of the IMCE
Task Force. Young, a former president at Martin Marietta
Corp., managed numerous complex and technically challenging
programs in government as well as private industry. He
recently led the Mars Program Independent Assessment Team
which reviewed NASA’s approach to robotic exploration.

The chair and the other members of the IMCE Task Force will
report to the NASA Advisory Council (NAC).

“This panel has been empowered to leave no stone unturned. We
have experts in all fields that have the capacity to dig deep
to help us restructure the business and financial approach of
this program, added Administrator Goldin. The task force will
identify opportunities for maximizing capability to meet
priority research program needs within the planned ISS budget
and International Partner contributions. In addition, it will
assess and refine cost estimates for potential U.S.-funded

A Financial Management Team (FMT) and a Cost Analysis Support
Team (CAST) will support the IMCE Task Force. The FMT will
assist the IMCE Task Force in reviewing the financial
management tools used in the development and operation of the
International Space Station, and making Agency-wide
recommendations for improvements. The CAST will assess the
quality of the space station estimates in an effort to
establish cost credibility.

In empowering the external team, Administrator Goldin stated
that, in addition to technical excellence, it is essential
that NASA maintain strict financial and management
accountability. The task force will review management reforms
in the ISS Program Management Action Plan and may make
recommendations for additional reforms.

The panel will report its findings to the NAC by Nov. 1,
2001. The NAC will consider and formally present its
recommendations to the NASA Administrator for an official
Agency response.


International Space Station (ISS) Management
and Cost Evaluation (IMCE) Task Force

  • Mr. A. Thomas Young, Chairman, former President of Martin-
    Marietta Corp., and former director of NASA’s Viking missions
    to Mars. Member of the National Academy of Engineering

  • Rear Admiral Thomas Betterton, USN (Ret), Vice Chairman,
    formerly a Senior Navy Official with the National
    Reconnaissance Office

    Science Group

  • Michael DeBakey, MD, heart surgeon and Chancellor Emeritus
    of the Baylor College of Medicine

  • Robert Richardson, PhD, Vice Provost for Research, Cornell
    University; shared 1996 Nobel Prize in Physics

  • Richard Roberts, PhD, head of the Department of
    Bioinformatics/Research, New England Biolabs; shared 1993
    Nobel Prize in Medicine

  • Rae Silver, PhD, Kaplan Professor of Natural and Physical
    Sciences, Columbia University and President of the Society
    for Biological Rhythms

    Engineering Group

  • Mr. Kent Black, former Chief Executive Officer of United
    Space Alliance and former Executive Vice-President of
    Rockwell International

  • Mr. Pete Bracken, vice chairman, ACS Government Solutions
    Group and former Director of Mission Operations and Data
    Systems at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center

  • Gregory Canavan, PhD, American Physical Society Fellow at
    the Department of Energy’s Los Alamos National Laboratory

  • Mr. Sidney Gutierrez, senior executive Sandia National
    Laboratories, former Space Shuttle commander and member of
    the NASA Aerospace Safety Advisory Panel

  • Bradford Parkinson, PhD, professor of mechanical
    engineering, Stanford University, original director of the
    Defense Department’s Global Positioning System Program and
    member of the National Academy of Engineering

  • Mr. Peter Wilhelm, Director, Naval Center for Space
    Technology, Naval Research Laboratory
    Brigadier General Pete Worden, PhD, Vice-Director of
    Operations. United States Space Command

    Business, Finance Group

  • Mr. Anthony DeMarco, President of PRICE Systems

  • Mr. William Friend, former Executive Vice-President of
    Bechtel Group, Inc. and a member of the National Academy of

  • Ms. Susan Eisenhower, President of the Eisenhower Institute

  • Mr. Robert Grady, Partner and Managing Director in Venture
    Capital, the Carlyle Group and former Executive Associate
    Director of the Office of Management and Budget

  • Admiral Paul Reason, USN (Ret), President and Chief
    Operating Officer of the Metro Machine Corp., and former
    Commander-in-Chief, United States Atlantic Fleet

  • Mr. Roger Tetrault, retired Chairman and Chief Executive
    Officer, McDermott International and former president of the
    Electric Boat Division of General Dynamics

  • SpaceRef staff editor.