Category Archives: Standing Committees

Affordable On-Line Colleges

The following link will share a free guide  on the best-value online colleges in the country. This guide has a lot to offer students interested in a STEM degree, especially those who can benefit from the convenience and affordability offered by the online programs highlighted. Degrees in engineering, technology, and science fields are very well represented among the schools recommended in this guide, including both bachelor’s and master’s degree programs.

Affordable Online Colleges Guide:

The graduate engineering section of the guide can be found here:

By linking to this guide, you can help local students identify a flexible, affordable online STEM program they can pursue from home. This guide identifies the nation’s 10 best universities for online bachelor’s and master’s degrees on a strict value-for-money basis.  Only  reputable colleges that rank highly in nationwide surveys of academic quality and student satisfaction are included. All the schools are fully accredited and award the very same degree to both online and on-campus students.

New Committee Chair Appointed

Associate Member Bruce Olson has been appointed the Chair of the ASA Workforce Committee and Joel Leonard as Vice Chair.

Homeland Security Committee Objectives 2013-14

The events of 9/11/01 markedly changed all our lives in myriad ways.  Defense of the United States and her protectorates had always been a priority, but until a small group of men, using commercial aircraft launched that stunning attack on civilian buildings on American soil, most people were comfortable that they were relatively safe from violence.  We have lived for over a decade in a world where that is no longer true.

The events of 9/11 that day were carried out with traditional, kinetic means.  In our current world, our future attacks will come from unexpected sources through non-traditional means.  Modern life in the United States is increasingly reliant on systems and devices that are interconnected.  Whether it’s a heart patient whose pacemaker is synchronized through wireless signals to a medical facility hundreds of miles away, a small population center near a chemical plant, or a major city where all the citizens find themselves on the smart grid.

 One of the most vulnerable aspects of homeland security in this aspect is aviation.  Whether this is the Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) constellation constantly providing coordination to millions of drivers, automated systems that provide air traffic controllers the locations and spacing of thousands of pilots, down to an individual drone.  All of this technology is experiencing exponential growth in threats and vulnerabilities.

 One of the most difficult aspects is getting humankind to actually get their heads around a significant risk that has only really been around for the past three decades.  One of the main objectives of the HSC in 2013 would be to reach out to the states and help them with awareness programs- for every resident.  Whether how an individual ensure safe practices while surfing the web.  To the major companies providing critical Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) services that if breached would result in significant casualties.  The HSC also hopes to address Critical Infrastructure Protection in the aerospace environment.

Marci Woolson, Chair

Education Committee Objectives 2013-14

As the education chair for ASA, Lt. Governor Reynolds looks to collaborate with participants in both the public and private sectors to increase awareness and visibility of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) subjects in grades K-12. That includes seeking to increase student interest and achievement in STEM subjects so that students will have greater opportunities to pursue a STEM and Aerospace career.  And to do this, actions steps include identifying high-quality programs that are already in place and working, and then to look for ways to scale them across the nation.

As committee chair, the Lt. Governor’s goal is to continue to drive innovation and economic development, while aligning with a highly-skilled workforce. And she believes that that skilled workforce must be trained in the areas of science, technology, engineering and math, (STEM) if we want our states to be competitive in today’s global economy.

 Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds, Chair

Aerospace R&D Committee Objectives 2013-14

For professional guidance the ASA Aerospace R&D Committee will consult and coordinate with professional organizations such as the AIAA and citizen organizations with aerospace interests and programs such as the Planetary Society. It should be noted that ASA interest in aerospace R&D includes a geographical perspective broader than the present system of federal installations, prime contractors and research universities located in a few handfull of states. It would be in the interest of many states that a portion of aerospace R&D funds were allocated to the underrepresented half of all states according to the formula used by the National Science Foundation EPSCOR program (Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research).

 Pending enhanced capabilities in more states there is one aerospace program that has come in the public eye in which ALL states have an interest and capability. Given the recent visit to and crash with Terra by NEOs (Near Earth Objects) the subject of Planetary Defense has gained visibility. According to the AIAA position paper “Protecting Earth from asteroids and comets” planning for such an unlikely but potentially catastrophic event should be undertaken by all levels of domestic and foreign governments, including states and provinces. Such state planning could – and should- be funded by the federal government.  And as for the NASA human  flight   program if we plan for astronauts to visit an asteroid their mission might include to try to budge the orbit of their host.

Michael Fulda, Chair

Policy Committee Objectives 2013-14

I am certainly open to any ideas or other taskings that may come about as we move forward, but I believe the focus of the Policy Committee over the next couple of years is to develop ASA recommendations for a national innovation policy and a national aerospace policy.  These two priorities came about at our October meeting in Fort Worth and were discussed on last month’s telecon.  The intent is to develop clear, concise, and compelling recommendations that are widely supported by the ASA membership that we then forward to our members of Congress and ask for action.

A few people have contacted me after last month’s telecom volunteering to assist and I owe you getting a telecom set up.  Please let me know if anyone else would like to participate in the drafting efforts and I’ll include you in the telecom meeting notice.  We’ll have a few telecons between now and March to prepare drafts that we can then circulate to the membership before our next in person meeting in April at the National Space Symposium.   Ideally we’ll have broad consensus by April so we can use that meeting to discuss next steps.

Joe Rice, Chair


ASA Space Exploration Committee Objectives 2013-14

The recent retirement of the U.S. Space Shuttle and broad budget concerns nationwide are posing fundamental questions concerning America’s future capabilities and leadership in aerospace – particularly with regard to space exploration. Concurrently, both President Obama and the U.S. Congress have challenged our nation to enhance humankind’s capacity to “work, learn, operate and live safely beyond the Earth” to establish a “permanent human presence in space”. Clearly, these circumstances call for innovative approaches that can reduce the costs, expand the benefits, and enhance the feasibility of future space missions. As such, the goal of the ASA Space Exploration Committee in the upcoming biennium will be to recommend cogent strategies and methodologies for achieving these goals – leveraging the aerospace-related resources, capabilities, and priorities of member states to facilitate national dialogue and collective action toward cost-effective and sustainable space enterprise beyond low-Earth orbit.

 Jim Crisafulli, Chair

Aviation Committee Objectives 2013-2014

As a FYI, the FAA foresees $619 million sequestration cut 1 March. HLS Sec Janet Napolitano said to the Senate Appropriations Committee: “At major international airports, average wait times to clear customs will increase by 50%” Wait times at the busiest US airports are already 2 hours and could double and other domestic passenger wait times would increase by more than an hour.  (for comparison DoD is looking at $490 billion in automatic spending cuts.)

With these cuts in mind, ASA can play a role by advocating on behalf of the States back to the Federal Government.

  1. We need ASA members to voice back to Congress the impact of FAA budget decisions in their respective States.
  2. We need ASA member to voice back to Congress the positive or negative impact of Next Gen ATM deployment in their respective States.
  3. We need ASA member to voice back to Congress to impacts of FAA budgets and it impact of on rural Air Service and the Airport Improvement Program.

Brian Dubie, Chair

ASA Vision for Space Exploration

Reaching Beyond Low-Earth Orbit

A Prescription for Cost-Effective and Sustainable Space Exploration

Prepared By
The Aerospace States Association Space Exploration Committee (Tel: 808-586-2388 / Email:

Introduction: The ASA Vision.

Over the past half century, the exploration of space has radically transformed our lives on Earth, as well as inspired far-reaching visions to extend humanity’s presence beyond our home planet.

Innovations born of the Pioneer, Mariner, Viking and Voyager Missions, the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo Programs, Skylab, the Space Shuttle, the International Space Station, the Magellan and Galileo probes, the Hubble Space Telescope, and other pioneering exploration initiatives have forged new inroads to scientific discovery, advanced our national engineering and manufacturing expertise, catalyzed revolutions in communications technology and computer science, enhanced environmental understanding and protection of our home planet, and ultimately afforded new frontiers for humankind to explore and develop.

Today, the exploration of space holds equal if not greater potential for innovation in science and technology that can uplift our national economy, enhance global security, educate a technologically proficient workforce, improve healthcare diagnostics and delivery, enable space-based renewable energy systems, and ultimately pioneer sustainable settlements on other worlds. Yet the recent retirement of the U.S. Space Shuttle and growing budget concerns nationwide are posing fundamental questions concerning America’s future capabilities and leadership in aerospace – particularly with regard to human space flight.

President Obama has challenged our nation to enhance humankind’s capacity to “work, learn, operate and live safely beyond the Earth for extended periods of time”, and to do so in ways that will strengthen our vanguard on the frontiers of space. Congress also has called for a space program that will facilitate a “permanent human presence beyond low-Earth orbit”, coupling space exploration to both national and global needs. In light of growing federal deficits, rising energy costs, and other acute economic challenges, these goals will mandate innovative approaches to reduce the expense, enhance the feasibility and ultimately maximize the scientific, educational and commercial returns of future space missions.

To achieve these goals, we believe our nation needs to embrace a collaborative, multinational vision for space exploration – one that incorporates the extensive knowledge, resources and capabilities developed through our nation’s historic Earth-orbiting, Moon, Mars, and other planetary space missions, along with the substantial experience and achievements of other space-faring nations, to chart affordable and sustainable roadmaps for humans to inhabit the realms of cis-lunar space and beyond.

We also must leverage the substantial assets, expertise and entrepreneurial spirit of our private sector in pioneering the space frontier – not only to maximize the potential benefits from research and exploration, but also to facilitate development and utilization of extraterrestrial resources that can benefit people on Earth, as well as support long-term voyages to and settlements on other planets.

Finally (and to ensure sustainability), we need an inclusive, “participatory” approach to space enterprise that will engage and empower the public – an interactive portal, facilitated through the Internet and other networking media, that will enable citizens to envision and assist in the design of future space missions, and ultimately inspire future generations of scientists, engineers, humanists, artists, educators, doctors, lawyers, entrepreneurs, and other key professionals who will orchestrate our spaceward migration.

The Role of the States.

The exploration of space is inherently a technologically and fiscally challenging enterprise – one that requires multiple assets and capabilities, as well as political will, to succeed. Although NASA and other federal agencies play important roles in defining and funding the potential opportunities and goals for our national space program, they must leverage the resources and expertise resident in states nationwide to ensure that future space missions are both affordable and sustainable.

In particular, states provide unique capabilities to combine federal resources with assets and capabilities in both academia and industry to:

  • Educate and train aerospace professionals (the next generation of scientists, engineers and entrepreneurs) who will pioneer the frontiers of space.
  • Develop, test and incubate new technologies across a wide spectrum of corporate, academic, and private innovation infrastructures.
  • Sponsor aerospace conferences and business roundtables to enable networking among key aerospace leaders.
  • Facilitate attractive tax structures, leverage venture capital, and seed public-private partnerships to promote entrepreneurship and expand space enterprise.
  • Provide adequate infrastructure (e.g., roads, communications, internet access) and leverage unique geographical assets (e.g., landforms, location, climate) to develop terrestrial analog test sites.
  • Dedicate public lands for space launch and other space-related activities, and create space research and education centers to both support these programs and facilitate technology transfer.
  • Convey the multiple scientific, educational and commercial benefits of space exploration to the general public.

The Role of ASA.

As a nonpartisan organization of Lt. Governors and other top-ranking community leaders from every state across the nation, ASA is able to represent states’ interests in federal aerospace and aviation policy development. It also advocates on behalf of all 50 states for research and design funding, workforce training, economic development in aerospace and aviation, and excellence in science, technology, engineering and math education. The primary goals are to help maintain U.S. leadership at the forefront of aerospace research and development, as well as to enhance states’ competitiveness in global aerospace markets. As such, ASA is uniquely qualified to help seed and support innovative synergies between state and federal programs that will strengthen states’ roles as both major contributors to and beneficiaries of national space enterprise.

How the ASA vision will help grow America’s aerospace industry, providing new business opportunities and high paying jobs to enhance both our economy and national security.

The ASA vision for space exploration (promoting multinational space initiatives that leverage entrepreneurship in the private sector and engage the public as stakeholders) is designed to stimulate industry growth by:

  1. matching common space exploration goals with complementary resources and capabilities among space-faring nations to promote collaborative utilization of assets (technological and human) that can reduce the costs and enhance the benefits of space missions;
  2. fostering public-private partnerships that strategically apportion intellectual and technical assets among government and corporate entities to maximize efficiencies and accelerate timetables for mission planning and implementation;
  3. promoting long-term, community-based advocacy for aerospace initiatives that reach beyond the policies and priorities of individual Administrations and Congresses to enable sustainable programs over decadal time periods; and
  4. focusing on initiatives that embrace a broad range of applications and deliverables through a balanced program involving both robotic and human exploration that can:

• advance space science, education and commerce;
• test, validate and deploy new technologies that can extract and utilize extraterrestrial resources in-situ; and thereby
• enhance humankind’s ability to establish affordable and sustainable settlements beyond low-Earth orbit.


The heady days of Apollo, which endowed our nation with a pioneering legacy second to none, dismissed “can’t” from our conventional lexicon and fueled human aspirations to reach for the stars. At this decisive juncture in our national space program, we must restore America’s “can-do” spirit – forging innovative and sustainable programs that will both rejuvenate our economy and invest in our future. For all the reasons cited above, multinational, entrepreneurial, and participatory space exploration is an excellent way to make this investment – “for all Mankind”! ASA is committed to partnering with federal agencies, industry and academic institutions nationwide toward achieving this goal.

Click here to dowload a PDF of the ASA Vision for Space Exploration

Workforce Committee

ASA Workforce Committee

Statement of Purpose

Many challenges threaten the viability of the U.S. aerospace in the coming years.  For instance, the industry faces a tsunami of Baby Boomer retirements in the near future, particularly in the manufacturing sector.  Coupled with a reluctance of many young people to enter what is often perceived as a less than cool job, working in a factory, the U.S. aerospace manufacturing sector will face a significant skills shortage in touch labor.

An illustration of this comes from a 2011 survey of Connecticut manufactures by the Connecticut Business and Industry Association Education Foundation, the survey found that many firms had a difficult time filling vacancies for CNC programmers, CNC machinists, tool and die makers, and CAD/CAM technicians–and this is in a state with an established history of manufacturing and a vibrant aerospace sector.

The long term viability of the U.S. aerospace industry, which employs some 800,000 Americans and continues to be an engine of innovation, will be threatened unless we identify ways to fully develop and maintain our human capital.

To do this the ASA Workforce Committee seeks input from ASA members to not only identify critical problems affecting and sustaining the workforce, but also solutions to those issues, and, then, effective ways to disseminate those solutions.

Bruce Olson, Chair