Leadership Board

Professor Ram Jakhu is Director of, and a tenured Associate Professor at, the Institute of Air and Space Law, McGill University, Montreal, Canada. He teaches and conducts research in international space law, law of space applications, law of space commercialization, space security, national regulation of space activities, and public international law. He served as Director, Centre for the Study of Regulated Industries, McGill University, during 1999-2004. He also served as the First Director and Faculty Member of the Master of Space Studies Program of the International Space University, Strasbourg, France, during 1995-1998. Professor Jakhu has taught Space Law and Policy in several countries, and policy related conferences and workshops around the world, and currently heads a multi-million dollar research and outreach program for space law and policy. Professor Jakhu is the Chair of the Management Board of the McGill Manual on International Law Applicable to Military Uses of Outer Space Project (MILAMOS), coeditor of International Study on Global Space Governance, and Member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Space. In 2016, he received the “Leonardo da Vinci Life-Long Achievement Award” from the International Association for the Advancement of Space Safety and in 2007 the “Distinguished Service Award” from International Institute of Space Law for significant contribution to the development of space law. Professor Jakhu has co-authored three books, more than 100 articles and 20 research reports and edited nine books, including the one that received the 2011 Book Award from the International Academy of Astronautics. A Canadian citizen for over 40 years, he has visited over 70 countries in the world and has often been interviewed by the global media regarding matters related to space policy, law and programs. He holds Doctor of Civil Law (Dean’s Honours List) and Master of Law (LLM) degrees from McGill University, Canada, as well as LLM, LLB, and BA degrees from Panjab University, India.

Dr. Joseph N. Pelton is the former Vice President of Academic Programs, Dean and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the International Space University of Strasbourg, France. He is also the Director Emeritus of the Space and Advanced Communications Research Institute at George Washington University. Dr Pelton is a Co-Editor of the newly completed book Global Space Governance: An International Study. He is currently on the Executive Board of the International Association for the Advancement of Space Safety and chair of its International Academic Committee. He is the award-winning author and editor of some 50 books and over 300 articles in the field of space, satellite communications systems, future technologies and urban planning. Dr Pelton has also served as Director of the Interdisciplinary Telecommunications Program at the University of Colorado-Boulder and in a number of executive capacities at Intelsat and the Comsat Corporation earlier in his career, including as Director of Strategic Policy and Director of Project SHARE at Intelsat. He obtained his PhD in International Relations and Affairs from Georgetown University, a Master’s Degree in International Relations and Affairs from New York University and a Bachelor’s Degree in Physics, Math and Political Science from the University of Tulsa.

David A. Bell, an industry leader in marketing communications, is the former chairman emeritus of the Interpublic Group, among the world’s largest marketing communications and services companies. Following the True North-Interpublic merger, Mr. Bell served as vice chairman with leadership responsibility for two operating divisions: The Partnership, and later, Advanced Marketing Services. Prior to the merger Mr. Bell was chairman and chief executive officer of True North Communications Inc., the world’s sixth largest global advertising and marketing communications holding company. Under his leadership, True North global brands expanded the company’s competitiveness while significantly improving True North shareholder value in just two years. Before his appointment to CEO of True North, Mr. Bell led Bozell Worldwide as president and chief executive officer. A 1965 graduate of Macalester College in St. Paul, Minn., Mr. Bell was president of the student body and a champion debater. Later becoming the college’s youngest trustee, he received both the Macalester College Distinguished Alumni Award and its Charter Centennial Medallion. Mr. Bell was inducted into the Advertising Hall of Fame in 2007.

John Goscha is an inventor and entrepreneur who most recently founded the Finally Light Bulb Company which has developed a next generation energy-and cost-efficient lighting technology that replicates all the attributes of incandescent technology while using 75% less energy. He is also the founder of IdeaPaint, a paint that can turn almost any surface into a dry-erase writing surface. In 2009, Mr. Goscha was named to Inc.’s “30 Under 30” list and was named one of America’s Best Young Entrepreneurs by Business Week. Mr. Goscha was also named to Forbes’s “30 Under 30” list for Technology in 2011. IdeaPaint has won numerous awards, including the Best Innovation Award and the Best of NeoCon Gold Wall Treatment Award at the NeoCon Trade Show in Chicago in 2008. In 2011, IdeaPaint was also awarded with the New England Innovation Award by the Small Business Association of New England. Mr. Goscha earned his B.S. in Economics and Entrepreneurship from Babson College.

Kate Arkless Gray studied Genetics at the University of Cambridge before embracing a career as a radio producer and earning a broadcast journalist qualification from City University. She is currently Head of Communications and Outreach at German new-space company PTScientists, and has previously worked for international broadcasters such as BBC and Al Jazeera. Her passion for space was ignited when she met NASA astrobiologist Dr Chris McKay, and she hasn’t looked back since.  Kate completed the International Space University Space Studies Programme in 2012 and won NASA’s International Space Apps Challenge twice in London, becoming a global winner in 2013. She organised the UK’s first space “unconference”, SpaceUP:UK and has presented a number of papers at the International Astronautical Congress.  Kate has reported on space for Sky News, Al Jazeera, Spaceflight Magazine and others. She maintains a blog and lively social media presence using her “SpaceKate” moniker. NASA administrator Charles Bolden called her “a true champion!” and challenged her to get more young people involved with space – something she is always keen to do. She lives by two mottos: “Make things happen” and “Never regret, just tell good stories.”

Col. Mike Mullane is a retired United States Air Force Colonel and aviator. He holds a Master’s of Science Degree in Aeronautical Engineering from the Air Force Institute of Technology and is also a graduate of the Air Force Flight Test Engineer School at Edwards Air Force Base, California.  Col. Mullane was selected as a Mission Specialist in 1978 in the first group of Space Shuttle Astronauts.  He completed three space missions aboard the Shuttles Discovery (STS-41D) and Atlantis (STS-27 & 36) before retiring from NASA and the Air Force in 1990.  Col. Mullane has been inducted into the International Space Hall of Fame and is the recipient of many awards, including the Air Force Distinguished Flying Cross, Legion of Merit and the NASA Space Flight Medal.  Since his retirement from NASA, Colonel Mullane has written an award-winning children’s book, Liftoff! An Astronaut’s Dream, and a popular space-fact book, Do Your Ears Pop In Space?  His memoir, Riding Rockets: The Outrageous Tales of a Space Shuttle Astronaut, has been reviewed in the New York Times and on the Daily Show with Jon Stewart. It has also been featured on Barnes and Noble’s 2010 recommended summer reading list.

Robert C. Springer is a veteran of both NASA and the United States Marine Corps. He has logged more than 6,500 flying hours in his career, including as a mission specialist on two space shuttle flights, the STS-29 mission aboard Discovery and the STS-38 mission aboard Atlantis.A graduate of the United States Naval Academy, Col. Springer has served two tours in Vietnam, where he completed more than 300 combat missions flying F-4 phantoms and more than 250 missions flying helicopters. He served as a test pilot for more than 20 different aircraft during his military career. In 1980, Springer was selected to be an astronaut by NASA. He worked as orbit Capsule Communicator, or CAPCOM, in the Mission Control Center for seven flights between 1984 and 1985. Col. Springer is an active member of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots, the Marine Corps Aviation Association, and the United States Naval Academy Alumni Association. He is also a member of the Operations Research Society and the Military Operations Research Society. Col. Springer has served as Chairman of the Board of Directors for Space is Special, a non-profit organization dedicated to using the hands-on applications of the space program to educate children with learning disabilities. He has also served on the Brevard County School Board and is on the board of Keep Brevard Beautiful, The Astronaut Memorial Foundation, and is President of the Board of Directors for the Education Foundation.

Robert Robert Pearlman is a journalist, space historian and editor of collectSPACE, the leading online news and community site for space history professionals and enthusiasts.  Mr. Pearlman’s original “Ask An Astronaut” website preceded NASA’s efforts to connect the public with the men and women who have flown in space. Later, as the online program director for the National Space Society, Pearlman led the redesign and expansion of the organization’s online resources and website, including authoring the educational viewer’s guide for Tom Hanks’ award-winning HBO miniseries “From the Earth to the Moon.” In 1997, Mr. Pearlman was recruited by Apollo 11 moonwalker Buzz Aldrin to develop the website accompanying Aldrin’s first novel, “Encounter with Tiber.”  In 1996, Pearlman was hired by Space Adventures, Ltd., the first company to launch privately-financed individuals (“space tourists”) to the International Space Station (ISS), as its first Marketing and Public Relations Director. Today, in addition to editing collectSPACE, Pearlman is a contributing writer for Space.com.  Mr. Pearlman serves on the American Astronautical Society’s History Committee and nominating induction committee for the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame in Florida. He’s a member of the Advisory Board for The Mars Generation and was previously on the board of directors of the National Space Society and U.S. Spacewalk of Fame Foundation. He is a former National Chair of the Students for the Exploration and Development and Space (SEDS). In 2009, Pearlman was inducted into the Space Camp Hall of Fame, in part for his work on collectSPACE.