During its relatively brief history, the Jet Propulsion
Laboratory has created an impressive legacy of achievement as
the world’s leading center for the robotic exploration of
space, pioneering some of the most important research into the
mysteries of the universe.

“The Beginnings of a Legacy: Stories from JPL’s Early
Years,” a free lecture presented by Blaine Baggett, executive
manager of JPL’s Office of Communications and Education, will
describe how it all began. Featuring historic film and
pictures, Baggett’s illustrated narrative of JPL’s early
history and its emergence into the space age will be presented
on Thursday, May 10 at JPL’s von Karman Auditorium, and again
on Friday, May 11, at Pasadena City College’s Voslow Forum.
Both lectures begin at 7 p.m., and seating is on a first-come,
first-served basis. Admission and parking at both locations
are free. The Thursday, May 10 lecture will also be Webcast
at 7 p.m. Pacific time.

An award-winning television producer and published
author, Baggett was vice president of national productions and
scheduling at public television’s KCET/Los Angeles before
joining JPL in 1999. Baggett’s science and technology
documentaries for the Public Broadcasting System include
“Spaceflight,” “The Astronomers,” “John Glenn, American Hero”
and several “Nova” programs. Among his many historical
documentaries is the production of “The Great War and the
Shaping of the 20th Century,” which achieved the rare
distinction of winning television’s coveted triple crown: the
Alfred P. DuPont journalism award, the Peabody Award and two
national Emmys.

Baggett was one of NASA’s national finalists for its
Journalist in Space program, which was put on indefinite hold
following the Space Shuttle Challenger accident
in 1986. A native of Mississippi, Baggett is a graduate of
Millsaps College in Jackson, Miss. He was also a Peace Corps
volunteer in Liberia, West Africa.

JPL is located at 4800 Oak Grove Dr., in Pasadena, off
the Oak Grove Drive exit of the 210 (Foothill) Freeway.
Pasadena City College is located at 1570 East Colorado Blvd.
For directions to JPL, see
http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/tours/routes.html . More information
on the von Karman lecture and Webcast can be obtained at
http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/lecture/upcoming.html or by calling
(818) 354-0112. JPL is managed for NASA by the California
Institute of Technology in Pasadena.