Space Activism at Home and Abroad

NSS Launches Membership Recruiting Drive
On the front page of today’s paper was an article entitled “Earthlike Solar System Found.” The article went on to explain how this newly discovered solar system is the first found to share certain characteristics with our solar system. The article also mentioned that a total of 14 newly discovered planets orbiting various stars were announced at the press conference yesterday. We are fortunate to live in such exciting times.

Despite all the amazing discoveries that we have recently made, it has been 30 years since we last went to the Moon and it does not appear that our astronauts will visit either the Moon or Mars in this decade. For many years the National Space Society has mounted various efforts dedicated to expanding and expediting our efforts to explore and develop our solar system. While our efforts have been beneficial, and at times absolutely critical, we must expand our resources and activities in order to create the future of which we dream.

As you read this, the National Space Society has just started a membership recruiting drive that will run through Space Week in October. We need your help! You understand the bright future that is there for the taking, and you know that the National Space Society is the best advocacy organization to represent your interests. The Society needs each of you to bring as many new members into our organization as you can.

We have prepared various items that will help you bring in new members. On request we will send you this package of information. The package contains a draft of a letter that you can use and suggestions of topics for use in phone conversations or face to face. The package will also include a membership form and information on some of the prizes that you can win. All of the items will be sent out via email so that you can print out as many as you need. Those that request a package will also be sent a list of space enthusiasts in their area that they can contact.

When requesting your recruiting package, please be sure to include your name, phone number (including area code), and zip code. This information is necessary for us to provide you the contact information on people in your community who share our passion for space exploration and development. To acquire your recruiting package please email Jay Wittner:

While you are recruiting new members, be sure to always indicate who the new member was recruited by so that you get credit for your efforts. If the new members you recruit decide to join through the NSS website (, ask them to indicate that you referred them in the third space of the online membership form that asks for more information. Membership forms that you mail into NSS headquarters must use the following address to assure that recruiting efforts are properly tracked:
National Space Society
600 Pennsylvania Ave. S.E. Suite 201
Washington, DC 20077-1060

Those who recruit the most members will be awarded with NSS dollars that they can spend on a wide variety of space-theme items including clothing and collectibles. For a look at some of the prizes, go to the NSS website and click on the Space Store button. In addition to NSS apparel, many other items from Countdown Creations are also available through the NSS website. Thousands of dollars have been allocated to provide great prizes for our membership drive. The grand prize that we hope to win through our combined efforts is the solar system for ourselves and our children.

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NSS Chapter Awards

The NSS Chapter Excellence Award is the highest award a chapter can receive. It is given to chapters whose pursuit of the NSS vision is representative of the best that our chapters have to offer. This year we have three winners:

This chapter produces a Cable Access talk show program. Their show airs in one of the most affluent and influential counties in the nation, Fairfax County, Virginia, on Channel 10. It is not a large chapter that produces this program, but the amount of work invested shows in the high quality of the program. This year the NSS Chapter of the Year Award goes to the DC-L5.

This chapter actively supports the NSS Education Committee. Last year they provided seed money and volunteers to support the 10th International Conference on Artificial Intelligence in Education at St. Mary’s University. Fortunately for this chapter they got to share in the revenues of the events. This is important for NSS as over the past several years this chapter has been a source of small grants for many worthwhile projects. This year the NSS Education Award goes to the San Antonio Space Society.

This chapter knew in advance of the NSS intention to develop a Political Action Network. In preparation they went ahead and formed a state-wide phone tree. In recognition for their work to assist NSS pursue its vision the Political Activism Award goes to the Utah Space Association.

Special Merit Awards are given to chapters whose programs show exceptional quality and effectiveness.
This chapter really reaches for the stars. They directly support a group, JP Aerospace, that hopes to reach with a balloon launched rocket. One of their members, Dr. Al Differ, also works on a source code program for solar sails. The Explorer Award goes to the Sacramento L5 Society.

This chapter works extensively with area schools and assists tours at the Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center. The Community Service Award goes to the Wichita Chapter of the National Space Society.

This chapter proves that even very small chapters can do big things. This chapter has 3 members. They are in the tenth year of broadcasting a one-hour weekly television show promoting public awareness of America’s space program. The Publicity and Media Award goes to the Middle Tennessee Space Society.

This chapter is only maybe three years old and already they are the second largest chapter, with 210 members at the last count. Last year they doubled in size when they went to about 85 members. This year they more than doubled. For the Most Improved Chapter we recognize the United States Air Force Academy Chapter.

This chapter reformed just a couple of years ago. Currently they produce monthly high-profile public programs. The Public Outreach Award goes to the National Space Society of New York City.

This chapter, one of our special interest chapters, is now our largest chapter with 335 members. This chapter has also been rapidly growing as last year they had 180 members. They publish an excellent color newsletter with professional content. This year they doubled the size of their newsletter from four pages with inserts to eight pages with inserts. The Chapter Newsletter Award goes to the Space Nursing Society.

A large number of chapters subscribe to this chapter’s newsletter which also includes their content and schedule of activities. For providing newsletter services to a large number of chapters the Service to the Chapters Award goes to the Lunar Reclamation Society.

This chapter is very active politically. Members participate in state level political caucuses. They also provide a unique service to the National Space Society. They have created and managed our beautiful flagship awards, the Heinlein Award and the Von Braun Award. The Service to the Society Award goes to the Austin Space Society.

Meritorious Service Awards are given to chapters that show consistent quality in their activities. This year’s winners were:
Illini Space Development Society For Education
Orange County Space Society For Education
NSS Seattle Publicity and Media
Oregon L5 Society For Lunar Research
OASIS For Public Outreach

This year we choose to express our appreciation and thanks to the New Mexico Space Society for Public Outreach and the fine job they did in hosting the 2001 ISDC.

The chapters are active but they do need help to carry on these programs, to expand their outreach, and most of all to work together and communicate more effectively with the rest of the society. That’s where you can come in. I would like to ask each of you, if you are not already active in a chapter, to approach or start a local chapter and at least offer some of your services. Even if you just lift a finger once a year — every little bit counts. Do something extra to promote the future we all seek!

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