JPL Director Dr. Lew Allen has been selected to receive the Robert H. Goddard Memorial Trophy, the premier award of the National Space Club, presented annually for "great achievement in advancing space flight programs contributing to U.S. leadership in astronautics."
Allen will be presented with the award at the National Space Club's yearly Goddard Memorial Dinner to be held at the Washington Hilton Hotel, Washington, D.C., on Friday, Mar. 16.
In honoring Allen, the National Space Club cited his "distinguished and significant contributions to the nation's advancement in space, earlier by service with the Air Force and the strategic defense of the country, and currently by leadership with NASA in the assurance of U.S. preeminence in planetary exploration."
Allen was named JPL director and vice president of the California Institute of Technology in 1982 after his retirement from the Air Force. His military career culminated in his assignment as Air Force Chief of Staff and member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Prior to those appointments, Gen. Allen served in many space-related leadership positions in the Air Force, including deputy commander for satellite programs, director ofspecial projects at the Air Force Space and Missile Systems Organization, deputy to the Director of Central Intelligence, and commander of the Air Force Systems Command.
During his tenure at JPL, Allen has overseen the teams responsible for several of the nation's most important scientific space missions, including the Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS), the Magellan Venus radar mapper, and Galileo mission to Jupiter, and the Voyager flybys of Uranus and Neptune.
Allen was born Sept. 30, 1925, in Miami, Fla. He graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 1946. Assigned to the Strategic Air Command's 7th Bombardment Group at Carswell Air Force Base, Allen flew B-29 and B-36 aircraft and served in various positions related to nuclear weaponry.
In 1952, Allen received a master of science degree in physics from the University of Illinois, and in 1954 was awarded a doctorate in physics after completing an experimental thesis on high-energy photonuclear reactions.
Allen is married to the former Barbara Frink Hatch of Washington, D.C. They have five children and nine grandchildren. The Allens reside in Pasadena, Calif.
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