Lt. Gen. Thomas P. Stafford, USAF (Ret.)

Thomas Stafford.
Thomas Stafford

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Profile as published in the Spring, 1993 program book. Author unknown.

Thomas P. Stafford, Lieutenant General, USAF (ret.) is the recipient of the 1993 Rotary National Award for Space Achievement. General Stafford was chosen to be this year's honoree for his outstanding contributions to the U.S. space program as an astronaut, an administrator and an advisor over a space of three decades.

In 1990-91 under the direction of General Stafford, members of the Synthesis Group evaluated almost 1500 innovative ideas submitted by a wide cross-section of national space experts in support of the Space Exploration Initiative (SEI). General Stafford's effective leadership of this massive project resulted in a thorough but succinct report, America at the Threshold. The comprehensive report details architectural options for accomplishing the Moon/Mars goals of SEI, identifies the technology development priorities and includes a series of recommendations for achieving the goals. This valuable knowledge base provides continued direction for civilian space planners.

General Stafford began his career as an Air Force fighter/test pilot. He was selected in 1962 as one of the second group of U.S. astronauts. He was the pilot for Gemini 9. In 1969, he commanded Apollo 10, the first manned lunar orbit mission which served as a dress rehearsal for the actual manned lunar landing. He was named Chief of the Astronaut Office later that year. By 1975, General Stafford was in command of the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project. Since that experience, he has energetically pursued closer U.S./Russian cooperation and improved international collaboration on space exploration.

As Commander of the Air Force Test Center and USAF Deputy Chief of Staff for Research, Development and Acquisition, General Stafford added to his experience and broadened his perspective of the aviation test and space industry.

In 1992, General Stafford was asked by NASA Administrator Daniel Goldin to take on a new assignment of examining policy questions relating to space shuttle retrieval of commercial satellites.

The Rotary National Award for Space Achievement Foundation is proud to recognize the contributions of Lt. General Thomas P. Stafford and honor him as the recipient of the 1993 National Space Trophy.

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