Contact: Jerry Berg
Media Relations Department
(256) 544-0034

RELEASE: 00-170

Best-selling author, television producer, and noted science
historian Dr. James Burke will be the featured speaker
Thursday at NASA’s Von Braun Forum in Huntsville, Ala. The
event is free to the public and will be held in the South Hall of
the Von Braun Center from 2:15-3:45 p.m.

A frequent keynote speaker on the subject of technology and
social change, Burke will kick-off the event Thursday with
“Exploration: Discovering New Frontiers,” — a discussion of
how new knowledge triggers innovation, changes in how such
innovation occurs and the subsequent impact on society. He will
address the history of exploration that led to humans reaching
into space and how technology drives economic development,
as well as improving our quality of life.

This is the 12th year for the Forum, sponsored by NASA’s
Marshall Space Flight Center to communicate the Center’s
goals, accomplishments and impact on the region and the
nation. The event involves the academic, industrial, arts and
professional communities. It was named in honor of Dr.
Wernher von Braun, Marshall’s first director and leader of the
Saturn V rocket team that took man to the Moon. His
persuasive efforts to rally Americans around the space program

Huntsville become a technology —centered city that continues
to reap the benefits of economic expansion from spin-off

Previous forum speakers have included Walter Cronkite, John
Denver and Jim Hartz.

Burke has been writing, hosting and producing award-winning
documentary television series for 35 years. His most recent
television work is a 10-hour technology history series called
“Connections3” for The Learning Channel. He has authored
eight books and contributes a monthly column to Scientific

In 1965, Burke began work with the British Broadcasting Corp.
and became its chief reporter on the Apollo moon missions. He
went on to produce, write and direct television series for the
BBC, PBS, The Learning Channel and The Discovery Channel.
His books include “Tomorrow’s World,” “Tomorrow’s World II,”
“Connections,” “The Day the Universe Changed,” “Chances,”
“The Axemaker’s Gift,” “The Pinball Effect” and “The
Knowledge Web.”

Burke was educated at Oxford and holds honorary doctorates
for his work in communicating science and technology.

An art symposium, part of the Von Braun Celebration of the Arts
and Sciences, will begin at 3:45 p.m. The multimedia
presentation will include narration and live music focusing on
NASA’s and the Marshall Center’s accomplishments and
visions for the future. It also is free and open to the public.

Both the Von Braun Forum and the arts and sciences
celebration this year are part of the three-day Technical and
Business Exhibition and Symposium (TABES) and Tennessee
Valley Economic Summit that began Tuesday.

Media desiring to cover this event may contact Jerry Berg at
(256) 544-0034 if they have any questions.