Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

AIAA SPOTLIGHT AWARDS GALA, Aug 12, 2021, virtual, 5:00-7:00 pm ET

The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) will hold its 2021 Spotlight Awards Gala virtually because of the pandemic.  It will take place on August 12, 2021, from 5:00-7:00 pm ET.

More information is on the event’s website.

The 2020 Gala had to be cancelled because of the pandemic, so the awards for both 2020 and 2021 will be presented at this virtual event.  The recipients are:

AIAA Goddard Astronautics Award

  • 2020: Robert D. Cabana, NASA Kennedy Space Center
  • 2021: Gen. Ellen M. Pawlikowski, U.S. Air Force (retired)

AIAA Reed Aeronautics Award

  • 2020: Alan C. Brown, Lockheed Martin Corporation (retired)
  • 2021: Michimasa Fujino, Honda Aircraft Company

Guggenheim Medal

  • 2020: Sheila E. Widnall, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

AIAA Distinguished Service Award

  • 2020: L. Jane Hansen, HRP Systems
  • 2021: Merri J. Sanchez, The Aerospace Corporation

AIAA International Cooperation Award

  • 2020: Jaiwon Shin, NASA Headquarters (retired), and Joachim Szodruch, Hamburg Aviation; IFAR, for the International Forum for Aviation Research (IFAR)
  • 2021: Michael Watkins, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory; Michael A. Gross, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory; Frank Flechtner, Helmholtz Centre Potsdam GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences; Albert Zaglauer, Airbus Defence and Space

AIAA Public Service Award

  • 2020: Steve T. Knight, Former U.S. Congressman
  • 2021: Marcia S. Smith, SpacePolicyOnline.com

AIAA Lawrence Sperry Award

  • 2020: Patrick Neumann, Neumann Space
  • 2021: Benjamin Jorns, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

AIAA Engineer of the Year

  • 2020: Andrew Klesh, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory
  • 2021: Humberto Silva III, Sandia National Laboratories

AIAA Educator Achievement Award

  • 2020: Elizabeth L. Bero, Horizon Elementary School, Madison, Alabama; Beth Leavitt, Wade Hampton High School, Greenville, South Carolina; Scott McComb, Raisbeck Aviation High School, Seattle, Washington
  • 2021: Suzanne Banas, South Miami Middle Community School Miami, Florida; Leesa Hubbard, W.A. Wright Elementary, Mt. Juliet, Tennessee; Mark Westlake, Saint Thomas Academy, Mendota Heights, Minnesota


Editor’s Note:  I am deeply honored to receive the 2021 AIAA Public Service Award for my more than 40 years as a space policy analyst and editor of this website.



August 12, 2021
7:00 pm - 11:00 pm