As we begin a new year, I am honored to be here, working with you
as NASA’s new Administrator.

As we enter 2002, we are sensitive to the events of the past
year. The senseless tragedy of September 11 illustrates the fact
that there’s no true way of telling what a new year will bring.

However, we now have the chance to pause and take stock, and to
think about the possibilities of the year to come. As we work
today to live with new resolve, let us commit ourselves to ignore
the trivial anxieties of life and focus on those things most
important — our families and our friends. If the year 2001 taught
us anything, it’s that every day we are blessed with life, health
and love is a good day.

In the wake of the terrorist attacks, we are all amazed at the
extraordinary sense of national resolve that emerged from the
destruction in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania. President
Bush has inspired a renewed sense of patriotic purpose. And with
that sense of purpose, he has instilled in all Americans a
resolve to take care of one another.

We also learned that with challenge comes opportunity.

It is up to each and every one of us to exploit the opportunities
of 2002.

The strength of this nation’s space program comes from your
determination. No matter the obstacle, the people of NASA have a
legacy of overcoming adversity. It is that deep determination and
commitment to excellence that will see us through the challenges
of the coming year.

As I move into this new role as NASA Administrator, we face a
substantial “to do list.” It’s going to require a lot of hard
work and some difficult decisions. But with you, I know we will
reinvigorate the agency’s mission of discovery and conquer new

NASA leads a unique expedition that is vital to the future
security and vitality of our nation and humanity.

As we celebrate this season of renewal, let us resolve to face
the problems, step up to the challenges, exploit the
opportunities, and continue to pioneer the frontiers of air,
space and knowledge. In 1899, Theodore Roosevelt said “Far better
it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even
though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those poor
spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live
in the gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.”

And in the words of Todd Beamer, that heroic American who
thwarted the hijackers of United Airlines Flight 93 on September
11, “Let’s roll!”