Vice President Mike Pence this week announced 29 candidates who have been selected to serve on the National Space Council’s Users Advisory Group. Heritage Foundation expert Dean Cheng is on that list, and he’s the only member that comes from a think tank.
Cheng, a senior research fellow in Heritage’s Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy, specializes in China's military and foreign policies. He has written extensively on China's military doctrine and the technological implications of its space program.
According to Space.com, the candidates must still be approved by NASA’s administrator. Other candidates include former politicians, astronauts, and high-ranking officials from private aerospace manufacturers like Boeing and SpaceX.
“The selected members of the Users Advisory Group will serve to fulfill President Trump’s mandate to ‘foster close coordination, cooperation, and technology and information exchange’ across our nation’s space enterprise,” the White House announcement said.
Pence, chairman of the council, hosted the group’s second meeting at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, in Cape Canaveral, Florida.
With the good work of the National Space Council at @NASAKennedy today, and with the strong leadership of @POTUS Trump and the support of the American people — I know we will astonish the world with the heights we reach and the wonders we achieve. pic.twitter.com/bdJ6RWUxpY— Vice President Mike Pence (@VP) February 21, 2018
“President Trump declared that our nation stands ‘at the birth of a new millennium, ready to unlock the mysteries of space’ – and after the first year of our administration, the record is clear: Under President Trump, America is leading in space once again,” Pence said at the meeting.
Below is the full list of the candidates selected to the National Space Council’s Users Advisory Group as listed on WhiteHouse.gov.:
Buzz Aldrin, Apollo 11 Astronaut
Tory Bruno, President and CEO of United Launch Alliance
Wes Bush, CEO of Northrop Grumman
Dean Cheng, Scholar at the Heritage Foundation
Eileen Collins, 4-time Shuttle astronaut, first female shuttle commander
Steve Crisafulli, Former Speaker of the Florida House of Representatives
Mary Lynne Dittmar, President and CEO of The Coalition for Deep Space Exploration
Adm. Jim Ellis, Retired 4-star Admiral, former head of STRATCOM, and member of the Space Foundation Board of Directors
Tim Ellis, CEO of Relativity Space
Newt Gingrich, Author, former Speaker of the House
Marillyn Hewson, CEO of Lockheed Martin Corporation
Homer Hickam, Author of the book “Rocket Boys” and former NASA Marshall Spaceflight Center engineer
Governor Kay Ivey, Governor of Alabama
Fred Klipsch, Founder and Chairman of Hoosiers for Quality Education
Les Lyles, Retired 4-star Air Force General and member of the NASA Advisory Council
Pam Melroy, 3-time Shuttle astronaut and former Deputy Director of the Tactical Technology Office at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
Dennis Muilenburg, CEO of the Boeing Company
Fatih Ozmen, CEO of the Sierra Nevada Corporation
G.P. Bud Peterson, President of the Georgia Institute of Technology
Jack Schmitt, Apollo 17 Astronaut and former Senator
Gwynne Shotwell, President and COO of SpaceX
Bob Smith, CEO of Blue Origin
Eric Stallmer, President of the Commercial Spaceflight Federation
David Thompson, Founder and CEO of Orbital ATK
Pamela Vaughan, Board Certified Science Teacher
Mandy Vaughn, President of VOX Launch Company
Stu Witt, Founder of Mojave Air and Spaceport, former Navy pilot, former Chairman of the Commercial Spaceflight Federation
David Wolf, 4-time Shuttle astronaut and physician
Pete Worden, Former Air Force General and NASA Ames Center Director