Former Senator Glenn, Governor Taft, Senators DeWine and Voinovich, John Lewis, John Ryan and Dennis Eckart call on community to lobby for NASA Glenn Research Center funding

An Action Plan to expand the role and
secure funding for NASA Glenn Research Center was unveiled to a group of
business leaders at a luncheon today in the Renaissance Cleveland Hotel.
The
Greater Cleveland Growth Association, Ohio Aerospace Council (OAC), Cleveland
Tomorrow and the AFL-CIO sponsored the event.

In the face of cuts in federal funding, the event sponsors called on
Congressional representatives and community leaders to support an
$80.1 million federal budget request and the designation of NASA Glenn as a
Lead Center in four areas.
Former Senator John Glenn, Gov. Bob Taft, Senators
Mike DeWine and George Voinovich, OAC Chairman John Lewis and Growth
Association President and CEO Dennis Eckart championed the action agenda.
AFL-CIO Executive Secretary John Ryan attended to back the plan and express
his support for NASA Glenn.

Lewis issued a call to action to the business community, detailing means
by which the attendees can rally for the plan before the House committee mark-
up, which takes place on July 10.
The action plan comes on the heels of an
announcement of a possible $52 million cut to the NASA Glenn budget.
NASA
Glenn is a critical part of Ohio’s economy.
It has a total economic impact of
about $1 billion annually and total employment impact of more than 12,000
jobs. The Center directly employs close to 3,500 highly skilled, educated
civil servants and contractors.

“The Center’s economic impact reaches into virtually every aspect of
Ohio’s economy,” Lewis said. “Our community must rally around NASA Glenn.
The
time for action is now.”

The $80.1 million request for fiscal year 2002 focuses on funding nine
projects that capitalize on NASA Glenn’s core competencies.

The projects
include:

  • International Space Station utilization – experiments in fluid physics
    and combustion

  • Ultra Efficient Engine Technology – work toward improving engine
    efficiency

  • Glennan Microsystems Initiative – technology transfer and job creation
    partnership between government-university-industry

  • Polymer Energy Rechargeable Systems – development of a long-life,
    environmentally friendly polymer battery

  • Flywheel Energy Storage System – creation of a longer life, lower weight
    and higher efficiency battery for spacecraft

  • Aerospace Education Center – focus on educating children, teachers and
    the public

  • Medical Devices from Space Technology and Research – biomedical
    monitoring, sensing and analysis of human health

  • Quiet Aircraft Technology Program – reduction of aircraft engine noise
  • Third Generation Space Transportation – technologies for air-breathing
    space transportation

In addition, the Action Plan calls for leadership roles for NASA Glenn in
microgravity, in-space propulsion, aerospace communications and biotechnology.

“The important work being done at the NASA Glenn Research Center reaches
well beyond the borders of Northeast Ohio.
It is work our nation needs to
remain the global leader,” Eckart said.
“We must leverage the great assets of
NASA Glenn Research Center as we re-invent our economy.”

At the luncheon, Governor Taft, former Senator Glenn, Lewis and Eckart
personally encouraged business leaders to join in a concerted effort to
promote NASA Glenn successes and potential, and persuade legislators and
others of the importance of NASA Glenn and its work.

“We need to look to the future and work together to ensure that our nation
continues to make investments in research and technology development that will
improve the quality of life for all humankind,” said former Senator Glenn.
“The Glenn Research Center is an important part of the future of our nation
and our state, and it is imperative that the Center stays at the cutting edge
of technology development.”

“The NASA Glenn Research Center is a critical component of the region’s
and nation’s economic future,” Eckart said. “We must stabilize it, expand its
role and secure its funding.
We must leverage the Center’s history of
innovation into an even larger and more pivotal role within the space agency.”

Lewis pointed out NASA Glenn’s extraordinary work, which has led to
revolutionary advances in medicine.

“The work done at NASA Glenn has real-life application — from blood pumps
for heart patients to satellite technology that transmits mammography images
directly to mammography experts for better diagnosis,” Lewis said.

U.S. Senators DeWine and Voinovich sent taped messages supporting the OAC
effort and addressing the importance of NASA Glenn to the region, state and
nation.

The Ohio Aerospace Council is an independent non-profit organization
allied with the Greater Cleveland Growth Association.
Its mission is to
maintain and increase visibility of NASA Glenn and its corporate partners
among members of Congress; develop a coordinated statewide aerospace agenda
and support a NASA budget with the greatest benefit to Ohio; and increase the
community’s awareness of the value of NASA Glenn.

The Greater Cleveland Growth Association is the nation’s largest
metropolitan chamber of commerce with more than 16,500 members.
Its mission
is to serve as a catalyst for economic growth and jobs creation in Northeast
Ohio.
The Growth Association is committed to enhancing Greater Cleveland’s
competitive advantage through leadership, collaboration and innovation.
( www.clevelandgrowth.com )