Personnel News: December 2001 Archives


December 2001:
Frederick Gregory Named Acting Associate Administrator for Space Flight, NASA HQ

"Gregory, 60, is Associate Administrator for the Office of Safety
and Mission Assurance (OSMA) at NASA Headquarters in Washington. He
will replace Joseph H. Rothenberg, who retires Dec. 15."

December 2001:
President Bush to Nominate Kathie Olsen to OSTP Position, White House

"The President intends to nominate Kathie L. Olsen to be Associate Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy. She has been Chief Scientist at NASA since May, 1999, and Acting Associate Administrator for the Office of Biological and Physical Research since July, 2000."

November 2001:
Joe Rothenberg - A Great Boss, by Art Stephenson, NASA MSFC

"I can honestly say that I have never worked for a person whom I enjoyed
working for more. Joe was there to help and there to move the Agency forward."

November 2001:
Randy Stone named as Deputy JSC Center

Editor's note: it was announced today that Randy Stone has been selected as Deputy Center Director for JSC. Stone had been in this position on an 'acting' basis prior to this permanent announcement.

November 2001:
Steve Oswald to Head Boeing Shuttle Effort in Houston

Editor's note: word has it that former Astronaut Steve Oswald (bio) is going to be running the Boeing Shuttle division in Houston under Mike Mott.

1 November 2001: Edward A. Frankel, NASA General Counsel, Announces Retirement, NASA HQ

"Edward A. Frankle, NASA's General Counsel for the past 13 years, announced plans to retire after a distinguished career, effective December 28. No successor has been selected."

1 November 2001: Astronauts End Space Flight Careers for Earth-bound Pursuits, NASA JSC

"Thomas D. Jones (Ph.D.), Peter J.K. "Jeff" Wisoff (Ph.D.), Tamara E. "Tammy" Jernigan (Ph.D.), Jean-Loup Chrétien (Brigadier-Gen., French Air Force), and Mark C. Lee (Col., USAF, Ret.) recently left the astronaut corps."

17 October 2001: NASA Administrator Dan Goldin to Step Down, Reuters, Yahoo

"Goldin acknowledged that he was not always popular with NASA staffers."

17 October 2001: NASA Chief Announces Resignation, AP, Yahoo

"Just the day before, the head of NASA's space flight office, Joseph Rothenberg, announced that he would be retiring on Dec. 15. Goldin insisted the two departures were unrelated and had nothing to do with NASA's $4.5 billion overrun in the space station program. "

17 October 2001: Statement by JSC Center Director Roy Estess on the Resignation of NASA Administrator Daniel S. Goldin

17 October 2001: NASA Administrator Daniel S. Goldin Will Join Council on Competitiveness as Senior Fellow

17 October 2001: Statements of Boehlert and Hall on Goldin Resignation, House Science Committee

17 October 2001: Planetary Society Reflects on Goldin Years at NASA

16 October 2001: Joe Rothenberg to Retire

Editor's note: NASA Office of Space Flight Associate Administrator Joe Rothenberg will announce today that he will retire from NASA effective 15 December 2001.

16 October 2001: Joseph H. Rothenberg, Associate Administrator for Space Flight, Announces Retirement, NASA HQ

"No successor has been selected."

Editor's note: Joe Rothenberg had many difficult tasks to confront while serving as Associate Administrator for the Office of Space Flight. The dilemma of the International Space Station being the most constant - and frustrating. However, the most difficult task Joe faced was not technical. It was a task he succeeded brilliantly at: retaining a steady reputation for honesty. This was especially noted on Capitol Hill. Given the aura of distrust that has often surrounded the ever-changing story NASA has peddled on the Hill for a decade under Dan Goldin's chaotic mangement, this was rather remarkable.

Joe's reasons for departing NASA are his own. I think it is a shame that excellent people like Joe feel the need to leave. NASA needs people like Joe right now. This departure is especially infuriating when people such as Dan Goldin who outlived their welcome long ago are allowed - indeed, are encouraged - to stay.

The White House needs to pay attention to NASA and they need to do so soon.

28 September 2001: Eric Sterner Leaving House Science Committee Staff

Editor's note: Eric, who served as Staff Director
for the House Science Committee's Subcommittee on Space & Aeronautics, will be leaving his current position on October 5 to work for Dr. J.D. Crouch, the Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy.

25 September 2001: Diaz Names Vanek and Denoon to New Management Positions at Goddard Spaceflight Center, NASA GSFC

"Goddard Space Flight Center Director Center A. V. Diaz has announced two key personnel actions, naming Charles Vanek to a newly created post as Assistant Director
for Safety and Security and Wentworth O. Denoon as the Director, Office of Systems Safety and Mission Assurance."

6 September 2001: George Martin Skurla has died, AP

"George Martin Skurla, who led the Grumman Corp. team that put together the Apollo lunar module that landed U.S. astronauts on the moon, died Sunday. He was 80. "

4 September 2001: Obituaries in the News, AP, Yahoo

"Julian Weisel Scheer, a former NASA official who arranged live television coverage of the first lunar landing, died Saturday of an apparent heart attack. He was 75. Scheer was the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's assistant administrator for public affairs from 1962 to 1971. He was awarded NASA's highest award, the Distinguished Service Medal."

20 August 2001: NASA Administrator Names Director of Security Management & Safeguards, NASA HQ

"Administrator Daniel S. Goldin today announced the appointment of David Saleeba as Director of the newly formed Office
of Security Management and Safeguards at NASA Headquarters, Washington, DC. "

20 August 2001: Glenn Mahone Named Acting Associate Administrator for Public Affairs, NASA HQ

"Administrator Daniel S. Goldin today named Glenn Mahone, NASA Press Secretary and Senior Advisor, as the new Acting Associate Administrator for Public Affairs."

Editor's note: Given that the position of NASA Associate Administrator for Public Affairs is a political appointment, this is most certainly an interim appointment by Goldin. You see, Glenn Mahone is a genuine F.O.B. - i.e. Friend of Bill (Clinton) and went to high school with him. Note his Arkansas background.

15 August 2001: DNC Welcomes Ted Nakata as New Intergovernmental Affairs Director , Democratic National Committee

"Democratic National Committee (DNC) Chairman Terry McAuliffe is pleased to announce the addition of Ted Nakata as
Director of Intergovernmental Affairs. Prior to joining the DNC, Nakata most recently served as the Deputy State Director for the Gore/Lieberman campaign in
Washington State. He was also the Senior Advisor for Intergovernmental Affairs at NASA headquarters where he worked with
state and local governments across the country."

13 August 2001: NASA Oceanographer Robert Stevenson has died

From Jim Oberg:

"With deep sadness and a sense of personal and cultural loss, I pass on the
tidings that Dr. Robert Stevenson, WW2 vet and oceanographer and very nearly
an astronaut aboard STS 41-G in 1984, died yesterday (August 12) at his home in Hawaii.

Bob was an instructor for astronaut crews on ocean observation from orbit,
and in 1983-4 was part of a program to actually fly an experienced observer
-- him -- on a shuttle flight. Because his own wife was battling a terminal
disease, he declined, and his alternate, Paul Scully-Power, made the flight.
Bob was scheduled for another flight in late 1986 but after Challenger the
mission -- and his seat on it -- faded away. I still have his mission patch
he designed and never flew.

Born in 1921, Bob would have been -- at that time in 1984 -- the oldest space
traveler, and of more statistical significance, the 'first-born of Earth' to
travel in space, since his DOB preceded both Glenn's and Beregovoy's. His
date of birth would have been that point, the earliest in human history, when
a future space traveler had been alive.

His insight, humor, passions, and far-ranging interests showed me he never
was mentally constrained by this planet, even as his body didn't quite manage
to slip the surly bonds of gravity. He was one of those many who paved the
way for those who did go, and got the publicity. When the real astronauts
gazed upon the oceans of Earth, the best of them did so with borrowed eyes
from him."

8 August 2001: NASA Marshall Center Associate Director Sid Saucier remembered for
service to nation's space program

"Sidney P. Saucier III, associate director of NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., died Monday, Aug. 6."

7 August 2001: Outsourcing controversy blasts NASA; PA chief is latest to resign, PR Week

"NASA head of public affairs Jerry Brown abruptly resigned his post on July 27, the latest casualty of what a number of former NASA employees are calling intense pressure from senior staff to award outsourced projects in an anticompetitive manner. According to sources speaking on condition of anonymity, Brown was one of many employees at the agency encouraged to feed new projects to companies with existing NASA contracts rather than let them be offered on the open market. Two other high-level employees who have recently resigned cited this "unethical" situation as the reason behind their departures."

Editor's note: NASA Watch has not been able to corroborate any of the accusations included in this story presented in (apparent) connection with Jerry Brown's sudden departure from NASA after only 100 days.

7 August 2001: Paula Cleggett is Acting AA for PAO (again)

Editor's note: Barely 100 days after getting the post, Bush appointee Jerry Brown's last day as NASA Associate Administrator for Public Affairs was Friday, 27 July. Paula Cleggett has been named Acting AA (again). Conflicting stories are circulating regarding Brown's departure - some say he quit, others suggest he was asked to leave. Sources at NASA HQ tell NASA Watch that Brown had come to realize that he had walked into a nuthouse (NASA HQ). This is all rather odd - given that the Bush Administration is struggling to fill political appointments in all agencies - to have one of their appointees (one who also served in the Bush-1 Administration) depart after such a short period of time.

10 April 2001: Brown Named Associate Administrator For Public Affairs, NASA PAO

13 June 2001: Astronaut Brian Duffy to Retire, NASA JSC

"Astronaut Brian Duffy (Col., USAF), a veteran of four Shuttle flights, has retired from the astronaut corps to accept a senior management position in the private sector space
industry. Duffy will retire from the U.S. Air Force at the end of June."

4 June 2001: Peggy Wilhide Named AAR Communications VP, press release

Former NASA Associate Administrator for Public Affairs Peggy Wilhide has been named Vice President of Communications for the Association of American Railroads.

7 June 2001: NASA Names Nelson Keeler Independent Verification and Validation Facility Director, NASA HQ

Nelson H. Keeler has been selected as the new director for NASA's Independent Verification and Validation (IV&V) Facility located in Fairmont, West Virginia. His
appointment is effective as of June 18, 2001.

22 May 2001: More Changes at MSFC's Transportation Directorate?

Editor's note: there are apparently more announcements forthcoming at NASA MSFC's Transportation Directorate (TD). All TD employees were notified of an all-hands meeting today from 11:00 to 11:30 AM CDT. TD managers will be meeting beforehand from 10:00 to 11:00 with the Center Director and Director of Space Transportation.

Update: Dr. Row Rogacki will be moving to NASA Headquarters to serve as Assistant Associate Administrator in Code R. Denny Kross, who has an extensive history of involvement with the Space Station Program, will serve as Marshall's new Director of TD. Chris Singer, TD's current Chief Engineer, will take on the role of Deputy Director of TD.

14 May 2001: Eugene Tattini selected as JPL deputy director, NASA JPL

"Lt. Gen. Eugene L. Tattini, 58, commander of the Space and Missile Systems Center at Los Angeles Air Force Base, will join JPL in early July, announced JPL Director Dr. Charles Elachi. Tattini will succeed Larry N. Dumas, who is retiring after serving as deputy director for the past nine years."

11 May 2001: Center Director's All Hands Meeting on Friday, May 11, MSFC

Notice sent to all MSFC employees: "There will be a Center Director's All Hands Meeting on Friday, May 11, at 10:30 a.m., in Morris Auditorium. All MSFC civil servant and contractor employees are encouraged to attend."

Editor's note: there is also a preliminary meeting of Transportation Directorate (TD) managers immediately before this meeting at 9:30 AM CDT. It is expected that a reorganization of the Transportation Directorate is underway. According to MSFC sources, a likely outcome is formation of a separate SLI program office that reports directly to the Center Director.

Update: Dennis Smith will serve as program manager for the Second Generation/SLI Program Office. Dan Dumbacher, who had been
leading the effort when it was in the Transportation Directorate, will serve as Deputy Program Manager. The Transportation Directorate will retain the remainder of the projects it had (engineering and research activities). One would expect that the new Transportation Directorate will place a heavy emphasis on propulsion research and development in support of Second and Third generation launch vehicles and in-space transportation systems.

7 May 2001: Major Departure at JSC Flight Director's Office

Editor's note: word has it that Jeff Bantle, Chief of the Flight Director's Office at JSC, is leaving NASA. The party is next Thursday at Gilruth.

25 April 2001: NASA Administrator Names Acting Associate Administrator or Legislative Affairs, NASA HQ

"NASA Administrator Daniel S. Goldin today appointed Jeff
M. Bingham as the Acting Associate Administrator for
Legislative Affairs, effective immediately."

19 April 2001: New Acting Director Appointed for NASA's Mars Exploration Program, NASA HQ

"NASA announced today that Mars Program Director, G. Scott Hubbard, has decided to leave that position following a successful
year leading the agency's robotic exploration program. Orlando Figueroa, currently the Deputy Chief Engineer for Systems
Engineering at NASA Headquarters, Washington, DC, was appointed to replace Hubbard as Acting Director, starting May 6. "

16 April 2001: Former MSFC Deputy Center Director Carolyn Griner Named as Head of New Spacehab Huntsville Office

Editor's note: this has been circulating at MSFC: "SPACEHAB, Inc., a leading provider of commercial space services, has opened
a corporate office in Huntsville, Alabama, at 600 Boulevard South. The
office is headed by SPACEHAB's Vice President and General Manager of
Huntsville Operations, Carolyn Griner. SPACEHAB has maintained a company
presence in Huntsville since 1997 and has contribued to the Huntsville
economy over the past 10 years through its contracts with McDonnell Douglas
(now Boeing Company) for the integration and operation of its fleet of
Space Shuttle carriers. The establishment of the Huntsville office signals
SPACEHAB's interest in expanding its activities with NASA's MSFC and other
aerospace companies and customers in the Huntsville area. Carolyn Griner
joined SPACEHAB in order to establish the Huntsville office."

10 April 2001: Brown Named Associate Administrator For Public Affairs, NASA HQ

"NASA Administrator Daniel S. Goldin today named Jerry Brown, a senior corporate communications executive, as the Associate Administrator for Public Affairs, effective immediately."

Bio at Walls Communications

"His responsibilities have included public policy analysis, crisis management, government relations and strategic consulting."

2 April 2001: Former NASA Associate Administrator Lori Garver Joins DFI International

"DFI International is pleased to announce that Lori Garver, former Associate Administrator of NASA, has agreed to become
affiliated with DFI International as Director of Space Program Development. In this adjunct capacity, Ms. Garver, the founder and
President of Capital Space, a Virginia-based consulting firm, and current President of the American Astronautical Association, will
assist DFI's senior management in strategic planning and business development activities related to the firm's corporate space

15 March 2001: Nicogossian still on the job onsite at NASA HQ?

Editor's note: Word has it that former OLMSA AA and Chief Health and Medical Officer Dr. Arnauld Nicogossian is still reporting to NASA HQ and is managing astronaut health programs despite being placed on an IPA to the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences which is located in Bethesda, Maryland.

2 January 2001: Dr. Nicogossian Leaves NASA HQ on an IPA, NASA HQ

"Following a long and distinguished career with NASA and after spending the last seven months setting the course for the newly established Office of the Chief Health and Medical Officer, Dr. Arnauld Nicogossian will begin an IPA assignment on January 2, 2001, that will share his world-class expertise in space medicine
with both the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences and the University of Maryland."

31 January 2001: Elachi Named New JPL Director, NASA JPL

22 January 2001: NASA HQ Announces Personnel Changes, NASA HQ

- Steve Varholy, Acting Chief Financial Officer

- Mary Dee Kerwin, Acting Associate Administrator for Legislative Affairs

- Paula Cleggett, Acting Associate Administrator for Public Affairs

- Beth McCormick, Acting Associate Administrator for Policy and Plans

Effective Monday, January 22, Courtney Stadd will serve as NASA's Chief of Staff and White House Liaison.

22 January 2001: No Takeoff at Space Agency, In the Loop, Washington Post

"NASA administrator-for-life Daniel Goldin has been asked by the Bush folks to stay "for an [unspecified] period of time, to maintain continuity," we're told by knowledgeable folks, while they search for a replacement. The issue will not be addressed formally until next week."

21 January 2001: More Changes to be Announced at NASA HQ

Editor's note: word has it that there will be a press release issued on Monday, 22 January, naming the people who have been appointed to serve as acting Associate Adminstrators to replace the political appointees who left NASA last week (Legislative Affairs, Policy and Plans, Public Affairs). Glenn Mahone will apparently stay on as Goldin's press secretary and Courtney Stadd, from the Bush Transition Team, is expected to be named as Goldin's Chief of Staff.

19 January 2001: New Goldin Staff

Editor's note: word has it that Sue Garman from NASA JSC will be coming up to NASA HQ next week to serve as Dan Goldin's Deputy Chief of Staff. Garman served as an executive assistant to Dan Goldin early in his tenure as NASA Administrator. Garman currently works directly under JSC Center Director George Abbey as JSC Associate Director (Management) wherein she is responsible for all institutional activities at JSC and the White Sands Test Facility, New Mexico. Garman has been involved in the preparation of NASA's "Transition Book" materials for use in working with the incoming Bush Administration.

19 January 2001: Dan Goldin to stay on - temporarily

Editor's note: word has it that an offer has been made to Dan Goldin (which he has accepted) to stay on for a short while, and that Bush Transition Team personnel will be moved to NASA to help steer the agency until a final selection for NASA Administrator is made. It is more or less understood that Goldin would not be considered for reappointment. No timetable has emerged to suggest when a new Administrator will be named.

16 January 2001: NASA's Chief Financial Officer is leaving

Editor's note: Arnold G. Holz has announced that he is leaving NASA.

12 January 2001: Letter from Dr. Kathie Olsen, Acting Associate Administrator, Office of Biological and Physical Research regarding Office of Biological and Physical Research (OBPR) Reorganization (letter contains detailed OBPR mission and responsibilities and old/new org charts)

"I am please to announce that our new organization has been approved. This memo serves to communicate conventions that the Office of Biological and Physical Research
should use. First, the office acronym is "OBPR." Secondly, five divisions are included in the organization. Titles and mail codes are as follows:

  • UG/Physical Sciences Division

  • UF/Fundamental Space Biology Division

  • UB/Bioastronautics Research Division

  • UM/Research Integration Division

  • UP/Policy and Program Integration Division

I have enclosed the OBPR mission statement. May thanks to all that supported our reorganization efforts. In addition, OBPR has a new web address: I look forward to the great accomplishments OBPR will provide to our Nation's space program."

12 January 2001: NASA Vacancy Announcement: Associate Administrator Office of Biological & Physical Research

"As the Associate Administrator for the Office of Biological and Physical Research (OBPR), the incumbent is responsible for executive leadership, overall planning, direction and effective accomplishment of NASA programs concerned with biological, biomedical and physical sciences research and applications, including ground and space flight programs for advanced human support technology, fundamental biology, biomedical research, physical science research, and space-based commercial research."

9 January 2001: Four tapped for key positions at Marshall Center, NASA MSFC



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