George Whitesides as Senior Advisor
Virgin Galactic announced today that George T. Whitesides, Executive Director of the National Space Society, has been appointed Senior Advisor to the company.
Virgin Galactic announced today that George T. Whitesides, Executive Director of the National Space Society, has been appointed Senior Advisor to the company. Virgin Galactic is on track to become the world’s first spaceline.
Founded by Sir Richard Branson, the company was established to undertake the challenge of making private space travel available to everyone. Will Whitehorn, President of Virgin Galactic, said, “George is recognized as a leader in the U.S. space policy and business communities, and has been a strong advocate for the developing personal spaceflight industry.
We are pleased to have him join our team in this capacity.” As Senior Advisor, Whitesides will provide guidance on regulation, markets and government relations, as well as provide general advocacy for the commercial spaceflight industry and the company.
His appointment strengthens the company’s presence in the United States, in preparation for the transfer of Virgin Galactic’s operations to the US. Whitesides remarked, “Virgin Galactic is leading the way to commercial space flight for the public. The next few years will be a critical period for the industry, and I look forward to helping Virgin Galactic make history.” He will continue his duties as Executive Director of the National Space Society during his appointment as Senior Advisor to the company. Whitesides began his career at Orbital Sciences Corporation, a leading manufacturer of space vehicles and satellites. As Vice President of Zero Gravity Corporation, he helped launch that company’s weightless flight service, now a thriving space tourism business. As the Executive Director of the National Space Society, he leads the largest public space organization focused on human spaceflight. He earned a bachelor’s degree in public and international affairs from Princeton University, and a master’s degree in remote sensing and geographic information systems from Cambridge University in England.
Virgin Galactic has collected over $25 million dollars of customer deposits and plans to begin flying private passengers as early as 2009.
The company has partnered with Burt Rutan to commercialize the revolutionary spaceship technologies pioneered during Scaled Composites’ successful campaign to win the X PRIZE.
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