e Newsletter of Challenger Center Special Edition
Cosmic Rendezvous - An Evening Among the Stars
Challenger Center Supporters Gather to Honor Heroes at an Out-of-this-World Event
On October 24, 2003, the Westin Galleria in Center. Recording artists Eddie Anders, Mark
Houston, Texas hosted Cosmic Rendezvous - Wills, and Lee Greenwood provided moving
An Evening Among the Stars. This gala event, musical performances, and the evening was
benefiting Challenger Center for Space Sci- topped off with dancing to music by MaxQ.
Welcome to a very special ence Education, honored the crew members of
issue of the Chal leng er Apollo 1, Challenger STS-51L, and Columbia A highlight of the evening was the presen-
Log. Our gala, Cosmic Rendezvous - An STS-107. tation of the Challenger Seven award. This
Evening Among the Stars, was such a suc- award recognizes those individuals who have
cess that we wanted to feature it in this Over 500 attendees gathered to remember made a personal commitment to Challenger
supplemental issue and thank all those these heroic men and women, and celebrate Center to continue the mission of the crew
who helped make it happen. Our network their remarkable legacies. The evening’s pro- members of Challenger STS-51L. It was pre-
of Challenger Learning Centers and sup- gram focused on a moving sented by Hugh Downs to
porters were truly the stars of the evening, tribute to the crew mem- Houston philanthropist Dr.
which raised over $200,000. bers, featuring remarks Carolyn Farb, who was in-
by NASA Administrator strumental in fostering sup-
Former President George Bush and Mrs. Sean O’Keefe, Challenger port for the first Challenger
Barbara Bush graciously served as hon- Cen ter Found ing Chair Learning Center, located at
orary chairs of the gala. While they could June Scobee Rodgers, the Hous ton Mu se um of
not attend the festivities, they shared the and legendary journalist Natural Science.
remarks below. They so eloquently cap- Hugh Downs.
tured the purpose of this special event, Silent and live auc tions
that I would like, in turn, to share their In his re marks, Mr. were held and featured a
words with you. O’Keefe described how Hugh Downs introduces the Challenger number of one-of-a-kind
“...not a day goes by in Seven Award, which was giv en to Dr. collectors’ items, including
which we at NASA do artwork by internationally-
not miss the incredible spirit of these astro- renowned artist Bob McCall. The auctions
CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD
nauts. Not a single day. We will never forget capped off the evening’s fundraising events
our fallen astronaut heroes. Through the liv- which, in conjunction with the generous sup-
Greetings from President George Bush ing memorial of the Challenger Centers and port from all the event’s attendees, raised over
and Mrs. Barbara Bush through our unceasing quest to explore the $200,000. These funds will be used to develop
heavens, we will always strive to honor their the classroom of the 21st century in support of
While Barbara and I cannot be with you for tremendous legacy.” the Challenger Learning Center network.
this spectacular celebration, we want to thank
you for attending Cosmic Rendezvous - An On behalf of the Apollo, Challenger, and Congratulating Challenger Center on its con-
Evening Among the Stars. We are honored to Columbia families, Dr. Rodgers thanked ev- tinuing work in the field of education, Mr.
be part of this wonderful salute to the heroes of eryone in attendance for their support, espe- O’Keefe said, “President Bush has expressed
space exploration: the crew members of Apollo cially those who helped Challenger Center get his as pi ra tions for the ed u ca tion of our
1, Challenger, and Columbia. These men and its start so many years ago. nation's youth with the simple but profound
women gave their lives for the future of space hope that we leave no child behind. Through
exploration so that we all would benefit from In a reflection of the honorees’ spirit of ex- the Challenger Learning Centers across the
their discoveries. Tonight we honor these men ploration and adventure, the evening also in- country, every year several hundred thousand
and women. cluded a variety of exciting events. Attendees young boys and girls, our future generation of
had the opportunity to try a Segway HT, take explorers, are not only not being left behind,
Barbara and I would like to thank you for a virtual tour of Johnson Space Center, and they are being swept up in amazing learn-
helping to “carry on the mission” of these fly a FA-22 PILOT flight simulator. Taking ing adventures that are help-
brave men and women through your support a break from their many duties, Ed Lu and ing to spark their pas-
of Challenger Center for Space Science Edu- Yuri Malenchenko sent a special message sion for exploration
cation. In 1988, Challenger Center opened its from the International Space Station, thank- and discovery.”
first Learning Center at the Houston Museum ing everyone for their support of Challenger
of Natural Science. Since that time, thousands
of students have benefited from the unique ed-
ucational experience here and at the nearly 51
Challenger Center thanks Mr. Brian Basset for granting permission
Learning Centers around the world. to use his artwork.
Since 1988, technology has changed dramati- While Supplies Last
cally, and your gift tonight will ensure that Limited Edition Mission Patch Made its Debut
children who visit a Challenger Learning The design team at A-B Emblem, which works closely with NASA
Center will experience the most technologically Johnson Space Center, decided to honor the gala with a one-of-
advanced educational environment possible. a-kind commemorative patch. The design honors the Apollo 1,
You are helping our nation’s children “reach Challenger, and Columbia crews, and commemorates the gala
for the stars.” And for that, Barbara and I event and Challenger Center for Space Science Education. The
applaud you. silent auction featured a signed version of the patch, which
was permanently retired after the evening’s festivities. Only
We extend our best wishes to Challenger Cen- 10 copies of the patch were produced, of which Challenger
ter for their 17 years of leadership in the space Center received three: one for display at its headquarters, and
community. two for release at a later date.
Cosmic Rendezvous - An Evening Among the Stars
Bishop Don Wimberly and his wife Wendy
greet astronaut Mike Foreman at the entrance
to the gala. (Photo by Laura Steinmann.)
Carolyn Farb accepts the Challenger Seven
Award for her personal commitment to Chal-
lenger Center and its efforts to continue the
crew members’ mission from Challenger flight
51-L. Ms. Farb was instrumental in fostering
support for the very first Challenger Learn-
ing Center, based at the Houston Museum of
June Scobee Rodgers (left), Challenger Center
Founding Chairman, Alfredo Camino, Caro-
lyn Farb, and Lee Greenwood, country music
star, take a moment to congratulate Dayna
Steele-Justiz, the gala event chair, during the
Old friends share an intimate reunion at the
gala: (from left) Charlie Justiz, Jane Smith
Wolcott, Gwen Griffin, and Jim Gray.
Lisa Austgen (second from right), Director of
the Challenger Learning Center of Northwest
Indiana Purdue University Calumet, joins
colleagues (from left) Lenette Belush, Cyndi
Etsler, and Jan Olesek for this special event.
Challenger Center Founding Director Cheryl
Astronaut Scott Altman takes time to sign
an autograph for Kathy Poe and Richard
Steve VanderArk, NASA astronaut, poses
with a poster of his good friend Ed Lu. Mr.
Lu was unable to attend the gala, as he could
not get a flight from the International Space
Station. (Photo by Laura Steinmann.)
Eddie Anders performs “Elysian Fields,” his
new song commemorating the Columbia
crew. Mr. Anders generously gave copies of
his new CD to gala attendees.
Hugh Downs, legendary journalist, greets
Sean O’Keefe, NASA Administrator, at their
2 All photos by Linda Lapointe except as noted.
Ed Lu (left) and Yuri Malenchenko send a
special greeting from the International Space
Station, 250 miles above Earth.
Alan Landever (left), Challenger Center’s
Vice President of Network Support, joins
Lorna Onizuka, Challenger Center Found-
ing Director, and Barbara Morgan, Educator
Astronaut and Challenger Center Council of
Advisors member, for a brief introduction.
Howard Wahlberg, Challenger Center’s Vice
President of Marketing and Network Devel-
opment, gets a quick lesson on how to ride a
Segway HT (Human Transport). (Photo by
Mark Wills (left) joins Jeff Ruby and Lee
Greenwood for a quick picture before the
Dixon Wolcott (left), Charlie and Dayna
Justiz, George Abbey, and Leo Rudd gather
for a group photo.
Lee Greenwood, a Challenger Center Coun-
cil of Advisors member, performs his classic
song, “God Bless the U.S.A.”
Staff members from local affiliate News 24
Houston meet a fellow journalist. From left,
Mary Estacion, NASA reporter, TJ Aulds, bu-
reau chief, Tisha Mesa, executive producer,
and Hugh Downs.
Mark Wills, country music recording artist,
performs his hit song, “19 Something.” The
piece commemorates in part the Challenger
Jack Kinsey and Becky Schergens, former
Challenger Center staff member, visit with
Dr. Adena Loston, NASA Associate Admin-
istrator for Education.
As Sean O’Keefe speaks on the future of
space exploration, he also congratulates
Challenger Center on its work to inspire
students to succeed in mathematics, science,
Miles O’Brien, CNN anchorman and co-emcee
In the next issue:
for the gala, tells the story of the beautiful
roses that were donated by Mark Shelton.
The Challenger Learning Centers of
For each NASA mission, Mr. Shelton’s fam-
Lucas County, Ohio; St. Louis, Mis-
ily sends roses to Mission Control. Red roses
souri; and Central Illinois celebrate
represent each crew member and one white
their grand openings!
rose represents those astronauts who have
been lost. The seventeen white roses shown
Introductions to new members of the
at Mr. O’Brien’s right were a poignant tribute
Challenger Center Board of Directors.
to each of the heroes honored that evening.
Donor highlights from 2003.
Backstage Pass Deborah Reguera
VIPs Tour Johnson Space Center Interim President
While in Houston for the gala event,
members of Challenger Center’s Board Director, Development
of Directors, representatives of the
Challenger Learning Center network, Jeff Goldstein, Ph.D.
Vice President, Space Science Research
and Challenger family members were
treated to a special VIP “backstage” tour Lynn Heron
of Johnson Space Center led by Randy Executive Vice President, Operations
Stone, Center Deputy Director.
Vice President, Network Support
The tour was the first opportunity for
Challenger family members to see the Howard Wahlberg
Vice President, Marketing &
memorial Challenger 51-L mission Network Development
plaque that was hung on January 28,
2003, in an informal ceremony. It was Jane Smith Wolcott (left), Charles Resnick, and Lorna Jennifer King, Marketing Associate
Suzanne Voegele, Development Coordinator
placed in the Apollo Era Mission Op- Onizuka visit the Challenger 51-L plaque. (Photo by
erations Control Room, used during the Suzanne Voegele.)
Challenger 51-L flight. Challenger Center for Space Science Education
of the mission, when they are removed to be and the Challenger Center logotype are registered
trademarks of Challenger Center for Space Science
Plaques are created for each NASA mis- displayed elsewhere. The Challenger 51-L Education.
sion and replicate the design of the mis- plaque hangs by the Ground Control console,
sion patch. These plaques hang near the next to the Apollo 1 plaque, signifying that the Challenger Center for Space Science Education is a
not-for-profit 501(c)(3) educational organization. All
Ground Control console until the end mission is not complete. gifts are tax-deductible within the limits of the law.
Cosmic Rendezvous Sponsors
$25,000 - Mission Control $2,500 - Payload Specialist A-B Emblem McCall Studios
Lockheed Martin Boeing Air Combat USA McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood
Westin Galleria & Westin Oaks Houston Challenger Learning Center of The Alley Theater Restaurant
Christie Simmons Northwest Indiana American Charter & Tour NASA Johnson Space Center
Challenger Learning Center at University The Antiquarium Neiman Marcus
$15,000 - Commander of Tennessee at Chattanooga Catch the Moment Nima’s Gallery
Continental Airlines Lawyers Title Galveston Christie Harris Companies, Ltd. Origins
Segway HT America SAIC Code 3 Collectibles RedandRover
Tietronix collectSPACE.com SciBrick Communications
$10,000 - Pilot Russ Griffith Crabtree & Evelyn Sensia Studio and Japanese Day Spa
The McGovern Foundation E.G. Kendrick, Jr. Crane & Co. Signature Press, Inc.
Woodforest Bank Cheryl McNair The Dream Foundation The SPACE Agency
Joe Allen Evin Thayer Studios SPACEHAB
The Honorable Steven McAuliffe Live & Silent Auction Contributors Gallery Auctions TheSpaceStore.com
June Scobee Rodgers Buzz Aldrin Griffin Integrated Marketing Summit Sportswear
Mike Budnick Houston Rockets Clutch City Foun- Tietronix
$5,000 - Mission Specialist Walt Cunningham dation Tiffany’s & Co.
Datatel Kimberly DeLape Houston Wine Merchant Top Drawer Lingerie
United Space Alliance Richard Didow The Houstonian Hotel, Club & Spa USA Today
Mike Mullane Joe Abuso Catering Venture Design Group
Ramona Ridge LEGO Systems Inc. VT2
Richard Wood L’Occitane Yoga Body Houston
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Company
It’s Our Mission.
(703) 683-9740 • www.challenger.org
Alexandria, Virginia 22314
1250 North Pitt Street
Challenger Center for Space Science Education