Press Release

National Space Club Announes 2011 Award Recipients

By SpaceRef Editor
March 1, 2011
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Washington, DC – The National Space Club (NSC) is pleased to announce their annual award recipients. The Awards are selected by panels of experts from across the aerospace and defense industry, and are a testament to the inspiring work of individuals across our nation. The Awards will be presented at the 54th Annual Robert H. Goddard Memorial Dinner, taking place at the Washington Hilton Hotel on Friday, April 1, 2011.

This year’s Awardees are:

Simon Ramo, Ph.D.,will receive the Dr. Robert H. Goddard Memorial Trophy. The Trophy is the Club’s preeminent award and it is given to recognize significant contribution to United States leadership in the field of rocketry and astronautics. This year’s recipient was chosen for his lifetime of engineering and scientific leadership and achievement that has made an unparalleled impact on our nation’s space programs. Among his many accomplishments are many critical early space programs including the Thor, Atlas and Titan rockets, intercontinental ballistic missiles, Project Mercury, Pioneer 1, VIKING 1 and 2, the Lunar Excursion Model Descent Engine and many other programs.

Colonel Ernesto V. Benavides, USAF Director, Reconnaissance Systems Office, has been chosen as the Dr. Joseph V. Charyk Award winner, recognizing an individual in, or supporting, the NRO who has made an outstanding personal contribution to the national intelligence space program and its mission.

Lidia Cucurull, Ph.D., NOAA Program Scientist, receives the NOAA – David Johnson Award created to recognize the achievements of young professionals who have shown outstanding innovation in the use of satellite data for operational environmental applications.

Leonard David, Independent Journalist, is recognized with the Press Award for significant contributions to public knowledge and understanding of astronautics and its impact upon our nation and all humankind.

Kenneth R. Fiscus, Science Teacher, Alberta Lea Senior High School, was chosen as the recipient of the Space Educator Award recognizing the importance of the secondary school teacher in motivating and guiding high school students in the study of and careers in space science and technology.

Jeffrey M. Hanley, Associate Director for Strategic Capabilities, NASA Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center, will receive the Astronautics Engineer Award annually presented to a space engineer who has made an outstanding personal contribution to the national space program.

LTC Patrick J. Mullin, 1st Space Brigade, U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Force Strategic Command, will receive the General Bernard Schriever Award for honoring the General’s legacy and vision by recognizing excellence in military space operations and acquisition.

Svetlana Shkolyar, Student, University of Florida, was chosen for the Goddard Memorial Scholarship provided to a university upperclassman with definite plans to pursue studies in science or engineering. The Scholarship’s purpose is stimulate the interest of talented students in the opportunity to advance scientific knowledge through space research and exploration.

Lili Sun, Student, River Hill High School, won the Olin E. Teague Memorial Scholarship as an outstanding graduating high school student who intends to pursue higher education in science and technology.

Rita Willcoxon, Director, Launch Vehicle Processing, NASA Kennedy Space Center, was selected to receive the Eagle Manned Mission Award for making a significant contribution to manned space flight.

The X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle Program under the direction of Dave Hamilton, Director, Rapid Capabilities Group, The United States Air Force, and Paul Rusnock, Vice President, Experimental Systems Group, The Boeing Company, was selected for the Nelson P. Jackson Aerospace Award in recognition of an outstanding contribution to the missile, aircraft and space field by industry during the preceding year.

Individuals and organizations interested in attending the 54th Annual Robert H. Goddard Memorial Dinner on Friday, April 1, 2011 at the Washington Hilton, may find more information on our website For specific questions please contact NSC at or by calling 202-547-0060.

National Space Club 204 E Street, NE Washignton, DC 20002 (p) 202-547-0060 (f) 202-547-6348

The National Space Club is a non-profit organization devoted to fostering excellence in space activity through interaction between industry and government, and through a continuing program of educational support. Awards are offered to recognize significant achievements in space science and enterprise. Scholarships and other education support are a major focus of Club activity.

SpaceRef staff editor.