Press Release

NASA Deputy Administrator Visits Miami For Future Forum

By SpaceRef Editor
April 15, 2008
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NASA Deputy Administrator Visits Miami For Future Forum

WASHINGTON – On Friday, April 18, NASA Deputy Administrator Shana Dale will present the keynote address to launch a daylong event at the University of Miami’s BankUnited Center celebrating the space agency’s 50th birthday.

NASA’s Miami Future Forum focuses on how space exploration benefits Florida’s economy and is part of a yearlong series. Media are invited to attend the day’s events, as well as a media-only question-and-answer session at 10:30 a.m. EDT.

Astronaut Carl Walz, director of the Advanced Capabilities Division in NASA’s Exploration Systems Mission Directorate, will provide an overview of the agency’s plans to return to the moon and explore beyond. Astronaut Steve Frick, who commanded space shuttle Atlantis’ STS-122 mission to the International Space Station in February, will deliver the luncheon address.

The event schedule for NASA’s Miami Future Forum is:

9:00 a.m. – Welcome by the mayor and/or other local officials, including Sergio Gonzalez, vice president for university advancement and external affairs, University of Miami

9:15 a.m. – Keynote address by the Honorable Shana Dale, NASA deputy administrator

9:50 a.m. – Overview of NASA’s Exploration Program by Carl Walz, director of the Advanced Capabilities Division

10:30 a.m. – Media briefing

10:30 a.m. – Innovation Panel – “Unleashing the Power of Technology and Creativity”

  • Moderator – Doug Comstock, director of NASA’s Innovative Partnership Program
  • Steve Kohler, president and CEO, Space Florida
  • Manny Mencia Sr., vice president for international trade and business development, Enterprise Florida
  • Jean Michel Caffin, managing partner, Axis Americas and Beacon Council Executive Cabinet (head of the international committee)
  • Tom Krug, associate and senior engineer, Geosyntec Consultants

11:15 a.m. – Astronaut presentation

11:30 a.m. – Discovery Panel – “Pushing the Limits of Knowledge to Inspire New Generations”

  • Moderator – Russell Romanella, director, International Space Station and Spacecraft Processing, Kennedy Space Center
  • James Tien, University of Miami, dean of engineering
  • Dennis Mills, UTC/Pratt Whitney Rocketdyne
  • Robert Atlas, director, NOAA’s Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory

12:30 p.m. – Luncheon with keynote presentation by space shuttle Commander Steve Frick

1:30 p.m. – Barrington Irving, first African-American and youngest person to fly solo around the world

1:50 p.m. – Inspiration Panel – “Building Idea Factories for the Future”

  • Moderator – Penny Haskins, associate director, Florida Space Grant Consortium
  • Okhee Lee-Salwen, University of Miami, College of Education
  • Bernice Alston, NASA deputy assistant administrator for education
  • Frank Brogan, president of Florida Atlantic University, former Florida lieutenant governor
  • Steve Frick, astronaut and commander of the STS-122 space shuttle mission

3:00 p.m. – Closing remarks and wrap-up

Reporters planning to attend should contact Marie Guma-Diaz at 305-284-1601 or, or Allard Beutel at 321-867-2468 or

For more information on NASA’s 50th Anniversary Future Forums, visit:

For complete biographical information about Dale, visit:

For more information about the University of Miami, visit:

SpaceRef staff editor.