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On Thursday, May 3, Stephen Colbert will be presented with the National Space Society's 2012 Space Pioneer Award for Mass Media on his popular show, The Colbert Report, on the Comedy Central cable network. The award will be presented by Apollo XI Astronaut Buzz Aldrin, a member of the NSS Board of Governors and friend of Colbert's.
"We are very pleased to present this award to Colbert in recognition of his unceasing promotion of space tourism, space development, NASA programs, and the use of private enterprise for better access to space, all of which are supported by the National Space Society," said Paul E. Damphousse, NSS Executive Director. "By frequently interviewing astronauts, space entrepreneurs and scientists on his program, he has demonstrated that it is possible to inform the public on serious space topics in a comedic setting."
Colbert is probably best known in the space community for his campaign to name a new space station node that actually resulted in the naming of a space station treadmill after him. The Combined Operational Load Bearing External Resistance Treadmill, or C.O.L.B.E.R.T. for short, is located in the Tranquility node of the ISS, the node that was the subject of the naming competition. Colbert received the most votes; however, NASA decided to name the node after the Sea of Tranquility, site of the Apollo XI moon landing.
NSS awards are usually presented at the Society's annual International Space Development Conference (ISDC), however since Colbert is unable to attend due to a schedule conflict, it was suggested that it might be an interesting twist for Buzz to present the award on the show and Colbert agreed. ISDC organizers anticipate that a video clip of the presentation will be shown to Conference attendees, in lieu of the in-person presentation that normally occurs.
About The National Space Society
NSS is an independent, educational, grassroots, non-profit organization dedicated to the creation of a spacefaring civilization. Founded when the National Space Institute and the L5 Society merged in 1987, NSS is widely acknowledged as the preeminent citizen's voice on space. NSS has thousands of members and supporters, and over 50 chapters in the United States and around the world. The society publishes Ad Astra magazine, an award-winning periodical chronicling the most important developments in space.
The International Space Development Conference is the annual conference of the National Space Society. ISDC 2012 will take place at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Washington, DC from May 24 through 28, 2012. ISDC brings together a diverse group of NASA officials, aerospace industry leaders and interested private citizens to engage in discussions about today's prevalent space issues in order to stimulate innovation and overcome the obstacles that hinder human advancement off the Earth.
For more information about NSS, please visit www.nss.org. For more information about or to register for ISDC 2012, please visit http://isdc.nss.org/2012. For more information on media access to ISDC, please contact Debbie Cohen at or 202-429-1600.
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