The United Nations declared the week of October 4 “World Space Week” to celebrate the contributions of space science and technology to the betterment of the human condition. On October 4, the Museum of Flight’s exhibit developer and adjunct curator for space history, Geoff Nunn, provided Rotarians a whirlwind tour of the Museum’s space flight and exploration programs and exhibits. On October 11, NASA Gateway Program business manager Emma Lehnhardt introduced Rotarians to NASA’s Artemis Program, a mission to return to, and land the first woman and first person of color on, the Moon.
The Gateway Program, a critical part of Artemis, will be humanity’s first permanent outpost in deep space, circling the Moon in a special orbit that will allow constant communication with the Earth and access to unexplored areas of the lunar surface. On October 25, former NASA engineer, author, speaker, science educator, and STEM advocate Linda Dawson of the University of Washington|Tacoma treated Rotarians to an overview of the history of human space travel and its connection to politics, NASA’s goals for space exploration, and discussed the commercialization and militarization of outer space.