WASHINGTON (Dec. 15, 2004) — The Coalition for Space Exploration expresses its deep appreciation to NASA Administrator Sean O’Keefe for his strong personal leadership during one of the most critical periods in the history of the space agency and recognizes the many contributions Mr. O’Keefe has made to the future of the space exploration.

“Sean O’Keefe’s unique brand of leadership and tremendous management skills were of great national significance in guiding the agency following the Columbia tragedy and in helping set NASA on a new course for the future with the Vision for Space Exploration,” said Jeff Carr, chairman of the Coalition for Space Exploration’s public affairs team. “We are also thankful for his encouragement and recognition of the Coalition’s efforts as an essential part of moving the Vision forward.”

“All of us who are a part of the Coalition for Space Exploration wish Mr. O’Keefe and his family well,” Carr said.

About the Vision

The Vision for Space Exploration redirects NASA’s budget and provides marginal increases to focus the agency toward accomplishing achievable goals on an affordable timeline, using a balanced program of robotic and human exploration.

The Vision begins with returning the Space Shuttle to flight and completing assembly of the International Space Station, which will be used as an exploration research platform. NASA will then deploy a new Crew Exploration Vehicle to enable humans to return to the Moon and follow robotic science probes to explore Mars and beyond.

A recent Gallup poll commissioned by the Coalition found that 69 percent of those surveyed supported the Vision’s plan, including a majority of both Republicans and Democrats.

About the Coalition

The Coalition for Space Exploration is a diverse group of companies, non-profit organizations, trade associations and unions who are dedicated to supporting the nation’s Vision for Space Exploration.

Our mission is to increase public understanding of the goals and benefits of the Vision for Space Exploration and engage the public in active political support of the Vision to help secure and sustain necessary funding to carry out the Vision in its entirety.

The Coalition believes the Vision for Space Exploration will ensure the United States will remain a leader in space, science and technology – key factors that will benefit the nation’s economy, help maintain our national security, and gratify our inherent human need to explore.

The Coalition includes a Public Affairs team of communications specialists who work with the general public and a Government Affairs team of legislative experts who work on Capitol Hill. For more information about Coalition memberships, including how to join, please see http://www.spacecoalition.com.