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Coalition for Space Exploration Announces 2009 Leadership

December 19, 2008

HOUSTON, Dec. 19 /PRNewswire/ — The Coalition for Space Exploration’s
(http://www.spacecoalition.com) Public Affairs Team today officially announced
its leadership for 2009. Dean Acosta of The Boeing Company and Joan Underwood of Lockheed Martin Corp. have been named the organization’s new chairman and
deputy chairperson, respectively. Both will serve a one-year term, effective
January through December 2009.

The Coalition for Space Exploration is a group of space industry
businesses and advocacy groups who collaborate to educate and inform the
public on the value and benefits of space exploration and to help ensure the
United States
remains a leader in space, science and technology.

Acosta will lead the Public Affairs Team, which conducts the
organization’s marketing, communications and public outreach efforts. In this
capacity, he will coordinate with the organization’s Government Affairs Team
to support its work as well.

Acosta is the director of communication for Boeing Space Exploration,
supporting NASA’s Space Shuttle, International Space Station and Ares
programs. In this role, he is responsible for setting the internal and
external communication strategy and guiding the marketing and outreach
efforts. Prior to Boeing, Acosta served as a managing director at Qorvis
Communications, a D.C.-based public relations/communications firm, and as
chief spokesperson, press secretary and deputy assistant administrator for
public affairs at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

“Having served on both the NASA and industry sides, Dean brings a thorough
understanding of the needs and challenges associated with advocating for a
robust space exploration program to this leadership role,” said Mary Engola,
the organization’s outgoing chairwoman.

Joan Underwood of Lockheed Martin will serve the Public Affairs Team in a
supporting role to Acosta to facilitate activities and outreach throughout the
year. She served in this same capacity for 2007.

Underwood is senior manager of communications for the Lockheed Martin
Space Systems Company, where she is responsible for strategic, external and
internal communications for the company’s Human Space Flight and Advanced
Space Programs line of business, as well as site communications support for
the company. Previously, she served six years as a legislative staff member in
Washington, D.C., for the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives.
Underwood is a charter member of the Coalition.

“Since Joan has previously served in a leadership role, she already has a
strong working knowledge of our organization’s goals and objectives,” said
Engola. “She’s also an asset in the media relations arena, having solid
relationships and ideas to promote the importance and benefits of space
exploration.”

In 2008, the Coalition coordinated several grassroots events across the
country targeting a variety of audiences from Congressional leaders on the
Hill to youth at the X Games in Los Angeles. The organization uses a variety
of marketing communications tools — public relations, advertising, online
media and op-eds — to disseminate messages about the importance of space
exploration. The Coalition has also sponsored a series of Gallup public
opinion polls, which have shown strong support for America’s investment in
space.

“This next year is going to be critical for our space exploration
program,” said Acosta. “With the change in administration and the impending
human spaceflight gap, our organization’s efforts must be focused on getting
NASA the additional funding it needs to fulfill its responsibilities.”

About the Coalition for Space Exploration:

The Coalition for Space Exploration is a group of space industry
businesses and advocacy groups who collaborate to educate and inform the
public and Congress on the value and benefits of space exploration and to help
ensure the United States remains a leader in space, science and technology –
key factors that benefit every American, strengthen our nation’s economy and
maintain our national security.

SOURCE Coalition for Space Exploration


Source: newswire



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