Led by Dr. Sandra H. Magnus, the Local Organizing Committee (LOC) is comprised of representatives from government, industry, and academia from across the United States and is working hard to plan and organize a Congress that will attract the global space community and highlight local space activities.
Dr. Sandra H. Magnus, Co-Chair, Local Organizing Committee
Dr. Sandra H. Magnus
Dr. Sandra H. “Sandy” Magnus is the Executive Director Emeritus of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), the world’s largest technical society dedicated to the global aerospace profession. She served as the Institute's fifth executive director from October 2012 until January 2018.
Born and raised in Belleville, Ill., Dr. Magnus attended the Missouri University of Science and Technology, graduating in 1986 with a degree in physics and in 1990 with a master’s degree in electrical engineering. She received a Ph.D. from the School of Materials Science and Engineering at Georgia Tech in 1996.
Selected to the NASA Astronaut Corps in April, 1996, Dr. Magnus flew in space on the STS- 112 shuttle mission in 2002, and on the final shuttle flight, STS-135, in 2011. In addition, she flew to the International Space Station on STS-126 in November 2008, served as flight engineer and science officer on Expedition 18, and returned home on STS-119 after four and a half months on board. Following her assignment on Station, she served at NASA Headquarters in the Exploration Systems Mission Directorate. Her last duty at NASA, after STS-135, was as the deputy chief of the Astronaut Office.
While at NASA, Dr. Magnus worked extensively with the international community, including the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA), as well as with Brazil on facility-type payloads. She also spent time in Russia developing and integrating operational products and procedures for the International Space Station.
Before joining NASA, Dr. Magnus worked for McDonnell Douglas Aircraft Company from 1986 to 1991, as a stealth engineer. While at McDonnell Douglas, she worked on internal research and development and on the Navy’s A-12 Attack Aircraft program, studying the effectiveness of radar signature reduction techniques.
Dr. Magnus has received numerous awards, including the NASA Space Flight Medal, the NASA Distinguished Service Medal, the NASA Exceptional Service Medal, and the 40 at 40 Award (given to former collegiate women athletes to recognize the impact of Title IX).
Vincent C. Boles, Co-Chair, Local Organizing Committee
Vincent C. Boles
Mr. Vincent C. Boles retired Aug 2017 as General Manager from The Aerospace Corporation where he worked thirty-six of his forty-three-year space career. He also worked in the commercial space industry prior to joining The Aerospace Corporation. Throughout his space career he progressively performed engineering, management, and organizational development roles. He was a developer and/or manager responsible for numerous space systems acquisitions, launches and deployments; including their architecture and technology development solutions. In these capacities he provided an integration function for space related solutions bridging policy and technology across intelligence, defense, civil and commercial space systems. During his mid-career, Mr. Boles developed and led the corporations domestic and international business growth, strategy, and organization build. He achieved strategic business with NASA, NOAA, European and Asian agencies and industry space markets, and other USA territories and civilian agencies. Mr. Boles was instrumental for bringing The Aerospace Corporation into membership and active roles with the International Astronautical Federation (IAF) and the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA). He remains an active member with each organization. Throughout his career he performed and served active roles with other space organizations and societies: a) the Virginia Commercial Space Flight Authority – Board chairman 4 of his 13 years; b) the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), Board Vice-President - International; and c) the American Astronautical Society (AAS) - current Board Director.
Mr. Boles achieved his Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees in Electrical Engineering from the University of Southern California in 1976, and Stanford University in 1977. In their retirement, Vince and his wife Veronica (Ronnie) reside in Northern Virginia and Southern California.
Michael E. Lopez-Alegria, Co-Chair, International Program Committee
Michael Lopez-Alegria has over three decades of aviation and space experience with the U.S. Navy and NASA in a variety of roles including naval aviator, engineering test pilot and program manager, NASA astronaut, and ISS commander. He is a four-time astronaut, having
flown on Space Shuttle missions STS-73, STS-92, and STS- 113, and served as Commander of ISS Expedition 14. He holds NASA records for the most extravehicular activities (EVA), a total of 10, and cumulative EVA time at 67 hours, 40 minutes. Lopez-Alegria is the former President of the Commercial Spaceflight
Federation, where he advocated for favorable public policy on behalf of the commercial spaceflight industry, and led policy position formulation and strategy execution in areas of government funding, regulatory, export control reform, and space commerce policy. Now based in Washington, D.C., Lopez-Alegria
is an independent consultant to traditional and commercial space companies and serves on several advisory boards and committees of public and private organizations.