Los Angeles, CA, March 12, 2005 – Leaders of the Space Frontier Foundation today praised the selection of Dr. Michael Griffin as the next Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration by President George W. Bush. The group has called for strong leadership to propel America back to the Moon and on to Mars. By harnessing the best of the private and public sectors, they feel Griffin might just have the right stuff.
“Mike Griffin knows more about space and capitalism than the last three administrators combined,” remarked Bob Werb, Foundation Chairman. “He’s also been inside the agency, and not only knows where the corpses of great ideas are buried, he knows who put them there. Vision-killing bureaucrats inside and outside of government should be trembling in their boots.”
A long-time champion of more effective ways for government and industry to work together in space exploration, Griffin has held a number of important leadership positions, in business as well as in government.
“This bodes well for the emerging New Space industry, and large non-aerospace companies who have so much to contribute to exploration, but have usually been ignored by NASA,” commented Rick Tumlinson, Foundation Founder.
“Mike has not only worked for one of the most creative aerospace firms, he’s led entrepreneurial ventures and fought for innovative commercial approaches inside the government,” explained James Muncy, a co-founder of the Foundation. “And, like all visionaries who have labored inside the palace walls at NASA, he wears the scars of battles with those who fear the challenge of success even more than repeated failure.”
The Space Frontier Foundation, America’s leading space commerce advocacy organization, believes the U.S. space program must be dramatically transformed to embrace and include the creativity and energy of the private sector. Urgent reforms must include new ways of contracting that pay for results rather than efforts on paper. Space launches should be fully privatized so the government can focus on exploration. The Foundation has long advocated a permanent human return to the Moon and venturing on to Mars, based on government explorers working with businesses to establish new industries and communities.
“Mike Griffin understands the key to opening the space frontier isn’t to pick one perfect technology, or pet project, but to take a strategic approach where different commercial and technical approaches can compete to deliver the greatest value for public and private space transportation users,” added Werb. “We wish him well, and look forward to a good relationship.”